As the legislative session was wrapping up this year thousands of farmers and families descended upon Raleigh to meet with legislators and share a message. The message these farmers had was simple: Raleigh needs to support them so they can continue to be the foundation of our economy and communities.
The largest sector of North Carolina’s economy, agriculture is as much a part of who we are as Eastern North Carolinians as anything else. The values of hard work and putting your community first have formed the bedrock of our neck of the woods. Here in Columbus and Robeson counties our communities in many ways would not exist the way they do now. I remember in the days immediately after Hurricane Matthew looking at the damage around our towns and seeing many of those very farmers volunteering their time and resources to clean up and provide for their neighbors.
While we know just how important farmers are to our communities, out-of-state trial lawyers and radical environmentalists began targeting these farmers with aggressive lawsuits to put them out of business.
In response we passed the NC Farm Act of 2018, which provides commonsense protections that provide farmers peace of mind that their livelihoods would be protected.
Disappointingly, Gov. Roy Cooper vetoed the N.C. Farm Act that very evening.
Make no mistake, though; Gov. Cooper may not have heard you and understood what was at stake, but the General Assembly did and swiftly moved to override his veto.
I’m proud to have stood shoulder to shoulder with our farmers these last two years in the North Carolina General Assembly, and I will continue to do so.
Brenden Jones, a Republican from Tabor City, represents District 46 in the N.C. House, which includes part of Robeson County.