Updated 06/06/2012 04:07 PM
Lawmakers draft bill to help local farmers
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CENTRAL NEW YORK -- The U.S. Department of Agriculture has designated Onondaga and Cayuga counties natural disaster areas after the loss of crops that was caused by freezes in March and April.
Crop farmers in Upstate New York have lost a substantial amount of their apple, peach, pear, grape and plum crops due to the freezes. It's estimated that three million acres of crops in New York State were hit hard this year and Cornell found that about half of the state's apples were destroyed by the unseasonable weather in March, followed by a spring frost.
New York State is the second largest apple producing state in the country.
To aid the farmers in New York, a bill was drafted to allow farmers to recoup 35 percent of their losses through a tax credit. This bill is called the Family Farmers and Apple Growers Relief Act and it could allow farmers to claim the percentage for the 2012 tax year.