NC Ag Commissioner Not Pleased that NC Products Shipped out of Virginia

As we wrap up our highlights of the North Carolina Agribusiness Council’s Candidate Forum, incumbent republican candidate for North Carolina Ag commissioner Steve Troxler addressed improving transportation infrastructure, including making I-95 a toll road:

“If we were to put tolls on I-95 it would adversely affect every aspect of agriculture in North Carolina.”

Plus:

“We need to spend the tax dollars that we pay for gasoline taxes and do the improvements that we need to in North Carolina. The transportation infrastructure was developed to get goods from the farm to the market and we need to get back to that premise.”

Troxler explains that during his tenure as Commissioner of ag, a committee has been formed to explore the expansion of North Carolina’s two deep water ports; Morehead City and Wilmington:

“We are going to try to drive the direction of infrastructure development in North Carolina. We developed a committee to come into the department and we talk about agricultural infrastructure and the needs we have out there. We at the department are working with other agencies.”

And as Troxler explains a port is just the beginning:

“We also worked with the government’s logistical task force to try and fit agricultural needs into the task force recommendations. We work with the port authority and the NC Rail road. All of these are part of the transportation infrastructure that we need to have. A port is just not a place where a boat pulls up and unloads. A port is actually much more. The infrastructure that has to be there to get goods to and from the port is all part of the port structure.”

And Troxler isn’t happy that most of North Carolina’s exported products are leaving state through Virginia and South Carolina:

“The good news is that agriculture and the military have been identified by the logistics task force as the two primary users of the ports of North Carolina. About 60% of the products exported are going north and south. Think of the jobs that we are missing. Think of the efficiencies that we are missing by not having an infrastructure in North Carolina that works. We have to continue to try to drive that from the Department of Agriculture.”

For more from the North Carolina Agribusiness Council’s candidate forum,click here where many of the candidates remarks are available.


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