Today, Lt. Governor Anthony G. Brown addressed the Maryland Farm Bureau’s (MFB) 96th Annual Meeting and Convention, becoming Maryland’s first Lieutenant Governor to speak to the yearly gathering of Maryland’s largest general agriculture organization.
The Lt. Governor highlighted the O’Malley-Brown Administration’s ongoing efforts to support family farms and the agricultural industry in Maryland, including investing $10 million in loans to new farmers and those seeking to diversify through the Maryland Resource-Based Industry Financing Fund (MRBIFF), preserving 280,000 acres for farming across the state, and approving the planting of 550,000 acres of winter grains for 1,700 farmers this year through Maryland’s Cover Crop Program.
“Governor O’Malley and I fully understand the importance of family farms as partners in the economic, environmental and social success of our state,” said Lt. Governor Brown. “With almost 13,000 farms in Maryland generating a $1.8 billion annual economic impact, ensuring strong support for sustainable agriculture is absolutely critical. As they have for hundreds of years, farmers are continuing to build opportunity and prosperity throughout Maryland.”
The Maryland Farm Bureau (MFB) is a private, non-profit membership organization. Their annual convention brings together over 350 farmers from across the state to hear from a variety of speakers on agricultural issues, discuss policy development for the upcoming legislative session, and encourage social and professional networking among active farm bureau members.
Lt. Governor Brown leads the O’Malley-Brown Administration’s economic development portfolio. In his role as Chair of the Joint Legislative and Executive Commission on Oversight of Public-Private Partnerships, the Lt. Governor has held numerous hearings, as well as a policy forum for over 200 attendees, in recent weeks to evaluate the State’s framework for public-private partnerships in order to increase the potential for private investment in public infrastructure projects. Additionally, Lt. Governor Brown chairs Maryland’s FastTrack initiative – part of Maryland Made Easy (www.easy.maryland.gov) – to streamline the state permitting process for businesses and developers and serves as Chair of the Governor’s Subcabinet on Base Realignment and Closure.