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Senator Ritchie Named ‘Eco-Star’ For Environmental Efforts

NEW YORK — The New York League of Conservation Voters, which works to make environmental sustainability a top political and policy priority in New York State, has named State Senator Patty Ritchie (48th Senate District) a 2013 “Eco-Star” for her work on environmental initiatives in Albany.

NYLCV’s Eco-Star award is presented to those elected leaders who authored critical legislation, lobbied their colleagues and helped broker bipartisan, bicameral solutions to New York’s many environmental and energy challenges.

Ritchie, chair of the Senate Agriculture Committee, sponsored the Food Metrics Bill (S.4061/A.5102) to strengthen New York’s local food economy. In addition to authoring the Senate version of the bill, Ritchie played a pivotal role in negotiating a consensus version with the Assembly and then lobbied her colleagues to ensure final passage.

The Food Metrics Bill will require state agencies to establish a food procurement tracking system, enabling New York to understand how its food dollars are spent and unlocking the potential of state dollars to achieve multiple economic goals, including supporting upstate farms and food production.

“The Food Metrics Bill would not have passed without State Senator Ritchie’s hard work,” said NYLCV President Marcia Bystryn. “This legislation will set the state agencies on a path to providing fresher food, reducing food-related transportation costs and helping local farms. State Senator Ritchie has once again proven her dedication to the agricultural economy of the New York State.”

In response to her Eco-Star recognition, Ritchie said, “There are so many benefits to putting more locally grown foods in our hospitals, prisons and other state facilities, healthier, more nutritious meals for consumers and a ready-made market for our hardworking farmers and that’s what this legislation aims to do. I’m thrilled to be recognized by the New York League of Conservation Voters, who share my goal of not only supporting initiatives that strengthen farmers’ bottom lines, but also encouraging more consumers to buy and eat local.”

A complete list of NYLCV’s 2013 Eco-Stars can be found at www.nylcv.org

NYLCV recently awarded the New York State Legislature an overall grade of “B-” for progress on environmental and energy issues in the 2013 legislative session.

The New York League of Conservation Voters engages and educates New Yorkers on environmental issues and the environmental decision-making processes at the local, regional, state and federal government levels.

NYLCV fosters open, nonpartisan discussion on environmental policy and empowers New Yorkers to be effective advocates on behalf of the environment.