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WHEREAS, appointed New Jersey State Board of Agriculture members are statutorily mandated to represent the top four agricultural commodities in the State and the statute setting forth State Board membership requires that all State Board members be engaged in active production agriculture as set forth in N.J.S.A. 4:1-4; and

WHEREAS, the agricultural community as a whole benefits from the specific experience-derived knowledge of each State Board member and inability of the Board to call upon the knowledge of any single member can negatively impact the decision and actions of the State Board; and

WHEREAS, the ability of the State Board to act in this representative capacity has been called into question as a result of a recent interpretation of the Conflict of Interest law; and

WHEREAS, the State Board, through its Ethics Liaison Officer, submitted a request for advice to the State Ethics Commission setting forth its concerns and requesting advice on this issue.

NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that we the delegates to the 92nd State Agricultural Convention, assembled in Atlantic City, New Jersey, on February 14, 2007, support the State Board in their request for advice from the State Ethics Commission to clarify this issue. 

BE IT FUTHER RESOLVED, that we urge the State Ethics Commission to provide timely advice and guidance to the State Board that allows the State Board and its members to represent to the fullest extent possible, agriculture as a whole and the specific agricultural sectors which, as a result of individual specific expertise as recognized by the full body of the State Agricultural Convention through due process, they have been appointed to represent and to wholly perform the statutory duties and responsibilities with which they have been entrusted as set forth in Title 4 of the New Jersey Statutes.