SENATE BUDGET AND APPROPRIATIONS COMMITTEE

 

STATEMENT TO

 

[First Reprint]

ASSEMBLY, No. 3732

 

with committee amendments

 

STATE OF NEW JERSEY

 

DATED:  DECEMBER 14, 2017

 

      The Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee reports favorably Assembly Bill No. 3732 (1R), with committee amendments.

      As amended, this bill directs the Department of Agriculture to:

      --  authorize the establishment of food hubs in the State;

      -- establish guidelines to assist and support farms and farmers seeking to belong to food hubs in their area of the State; and

      --  adopt regulations to implement the bill.

The bill defines “food hub” as a business or organization that actively manages the aggregation, distribution, and marketing of source-identified food products primarily from local or regional producers to strengthen their ability to satisfy wholesale, retail, and institutional demand.

      As amended and reported, this bill is identical to Senate Bill No. 2822, as also amended and reported by the committee.

 

COMMITTEE AMENDMENTS:

      The amendments direct the Department of Agriculture to establish guidelines, instead of a program, to assist and support farms and farmers seeking to belong to food hubs in their area of the State.

 

FISCAL IMPACT:

      The Office of Legislative Services determines that this bill may result in an expenditure increase to the Department of Agriculture to develop guidelines and promulgate regulations to assist and support farms and farmers seeking to belong to food hubs.  It is possible that the department may incur no marginal cost to accomplish these tasks.