Sen. Hune honored with Silver Plow Award


LANSING — Michigan Farm Bureau (MFB) recently presented Sen. Joe Hune with a Silver Plow Award, which represents the esteem and gratitude of Michigan’s farmers.

“Receiving the Silver Plow Award from Michigan Farm Bureau is a tremendous honor,” said Hune, R-Hamburg Township, chair of the Senate Agriculture Committee.

According to MFB, Hune was selected for the award for his “common-sense approach to legislation that allows Michigan’s prodigious agriculture industry to prosper.” The awards were presented at MFB’s Lansing Legislative Seminar on Feb. 15.

“You very rarely get someone who’s involved in agriculture and who is supportive of agriculture the way that Joe Hune is,” said Duane Leach, president of the Shiawassee County Farm Bureau.

Hune and Rep. Kevin Daley, R-Lum, chair of the House Agriculture Committee, sponsored Public Acts 1 and 2 of 2011, which codified the Michigan Agriculture Environmental Assurance Program (MAEAP) into state statute. Hune’s measure will help ensure that Michigan farmers who voluntarily comply with state environmental standards receive real benefits.

MAEAP is a voluntary program that benefits all Michigan farms, regardless of their size or commodity, by helping farmers identify and minimize potential pollution risks on their farms. In the 10 years since its origin, more than 1,000 farms have become MAEAP verified in one or more of the program’s three systems­­—farmstead, cropping and livestock.

“Both Chairman Hune and Representative Daley were instrumental in championing this legislation and working it through the process,” said Matt Smego, MFB legislative counsel. “Both were also very helpful in defending agriculture’s position when points of difference were brought up during discussions on the bill. Together they moved this legislation in a timely manner, allowing it to be the first legislation signed into law by Governor Snyder.”