Reps. Sheehy, Patterson Attend Agricultural Education Event In NW Ohio
Dem lawmakers learn best practices for reducing harmful phosphorous runoff
October 16, 2015
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State Reps. Michael Sheehy (D-Oregon) and John Patterson (D-Jefferson) joined fellow legislators in Northwestern Ohio today for an agricultural education event sponsored by the Wood County Soil and Water Conservation District. The event focused on educating the legislators on agricultural management practices, and in particular, ways to reduce excessive phosphorous runoff that can harm water quality.

“We must do everything we can to protect the quality of our drinking water and prevent another crisis like the one that occurred in Toledo last summer,” Sheehy said. “The information we learned today will be helpful to our future legislative efforts to prevent toxic algal blooms from damaging Lake Erie.”

After visiting the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center (OARDC) in Hoytville, the legislators traveled to a nearby farm, where they learned about edge of field monitoring stations as well as filter strips and cover crops.  Edge of field monitoring stations help track and analyze runoff from where fertilizers are applied to farmland. Filter strips are planted between agricultural fields and waterways in order to absorb nutrients back into the ground and prevent excessive runoff.

“I appreciated the opportunity to get a ground level view of what farmers are doing to address our state’s water quality issues,” said Patterson. “Agriculture is our state’s number one industry, and we must work together to balance our need for strong environmental policies with ones that ensure that farmers are able to continue their important work.”

Rep. Patterson serves as the ranking minority member on the House Agriculture and Rural Development Committee, of which Rep. Sheehy is also a member. 

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