Agriculture divides on Issue 2 in Ohio
I would like to correct a few statements made by James Hellyer, of Johnstown, in the Oct. 12 issue of The Advocate. Hellyer's concern seems to start with the Constitutional change, a fact that should be addressed. By placing this board in the Ohio Constitution, Issue 2 gives Ohio voters the chance to make a strong statement in support of Ohio's livestock farmers and in support of responsible food production.
If you look closely at the Ohio Constitution, it already is home to several other boards -- including the state board of education, the Ohio tuition trust fund and the Ohio ballot board -- equally important boards to the state of Ohio.
The total cost of implementing this board is unknown, but burdening our fiscal budget by adding increasing taxes to consumers is unlikely. The proposal recommends that the Ohio Department of Agriculture house the board, which should offer some opportunity to leverage existing resources and save money.
The proposed board will definitely be made up of people involved in agriculture -- veterinarians, farmers and scientists will work together with consumers and Humane Society members to provide a combined expertise of backgrounds to ask questions and provide answers on important issues of how farm animals are treated and how our food is produced.
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