My family and I have committed our lives to preserving Michigan’s agricultural heritage. Agriculture is one of the Michigan’s economic bright spots and critically important to our area of the state. There is great opportunity for continued growth within the industry and I support policies that will sustain this positive momentum.
I’m especially proud of legislation I had signed into law that allows our small winemakers to sell their products at participating Farmer’s Markets in the state. When our farmers were affected by adverse weather conditions in 2012, I supported state funding that made available emergency loans to help mitigate crop losses. The Michigan Agricultural Environmental Assurance Program is another successful voluntary program that is pro-farmer, pro-environment and pro-jobs. I supported efforts to adopt this program into state law for farmers who implement sound environmental stewardship practices on their land.
Last year, I completed the inaugural “Hansen Hotspots” tour through my senate district. We did a series of day-long stops at a variety of locations to promote local tourism and agri-tourism-related small businesses that offer a Pure Michigan experience. We used primarily non-motorized transportation, i.e. bikes, boats, kayaks, walk, to spotlight the great amenities in west Michigan. It was an honor to help promote all of the wonderful amenities and local businesses who are contributing to the success of our local economy.