Senate Passes “Farming First” Legislative Package

The Senate approved a package of “Farming First” bills this week that would help Pennsylvania agricultural operations remain competitive and profitable for current and future generations of farmers, according to Senator Scott Hutchinson.

The bills in the “Farming First” package would:

  • Change the state’s farmland preservation program to allow farmers more flexibility for building or subdividing residences. Senate Bill 145
  • Update Pennsylvania’s Vehicle Code to allow the transportation of large farm equipment. Senate Bill 338
  • Set commonsense safety standards and removing costly requirements for barn weddings and other social events on farms. Senate Bill 453
  • Provide a tax credit program for landowners to lease or sell farmland to future generations of farmers. Senate Bill 478
  • Ease restrictions on the use of farmland for farm-related tourism and entertainment activities Senate Bill 583
  • Create the Pennsylvania Dairy Future Commission to bring together all stakeholders in the industry. Senate Bill 585
  • Exempt milk haulers from weather-related travel bans. Senate Bill 588

The “Farming First” legislative package builds on the longstanding efforts of Senate Republicans to support Pennsylvania’s farm families and maintain agriculture’s status as the state’s top industry. Pennsylvania’s 59,000 farm families manage more than 7.7 million acres of farmland. The agriculture industry generates more than $7.5 billion in cash receipts annually.


Senate Republicans led the fight last year to create the Pennsylvania Dairy Industry Investment Program, which is designed to improve the production, processing and distribution of dairy products throughout the state.

All of the bills in the “Farming First” package were sent to the House of Representatives for consideration. Click here for more information.


Contact:           Justin Leventry (717) 787-9684.

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