ALBANY (March 3, 2010)Ã¢â‚¬â€The New York State Senate today passed legislation sponsored by Sen. Darrel J. Aubertine which will ease building codes for maple producers in an effort to increase agricultural tourism.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“Easing unnecessary regulations on our agricultural industries will enable these businesses to grow, improve our economy and help create jobs,Ã¢â‚¬Â said Sen. Aubertine, who is chair of the Senate Agriculture Committee. Ã¢â‚¬Å“Maple production is a staple in our rural communities and an industry that lends itself well to tourism activities. By easing these regulations we are giving maple producers the latitude they need to expand their business for tourism.Ã¢â‚¬Â
“Agriculture plays a critical role in our economy, and this legislation is another step toward helping expand opportunities for agribusiness in New York State,Ã¢â‚¬Â Senator David J. Valesky said. Ã¢â‚¬Å“Maple production has great potential for business and tourism, and this bill will help encourage growth in the industry.”
New York State is consistently one of the top maple producing states in the country, with room to grow, the state has more tappable trees than any other state. This bill would require the state fire prevention and building code council to expand the definition of agricultural buildings to include maple production facilities and sugarhouses, allowing these businesses to provide for public access and assembly as an agricultural tourism activity. This change in the code will put maple syrup producers on the same level as wineries in New York State, allowing the industry to enjoy the same product promotion opportunities.