Officials push to get East End farmers grant money
CUTCHOGUE - The federal government may soon offer funding to farmers on the East End for the implementation of farming techniques that have minimal environmental impact.
Rep. Tim Bishop (D – Suffolk) says the government will choose up to eight areas of the country to receive the funds. The money could be used for such things as experimental, non-polluting fertilizers.
“This is all about protecting both surface water and groundwater, so I think we can be the textbook example of how this program can work,” said Bishop.
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Environmentalists have long-criticized Long Island farmers, calling them major contributors to groundwater pollution. But they say this new potential pool of federal money could expand environmentally friendly farming practices that have been put in place in recent years.
The United States Department of Agriculture is reviewing the proposed critical conservation areas.