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Ohio Lawmakers Approve New Bill to Promote Agritourism

photo of aerial photo of Northern Ohio farmland

The Ohio Legislature has passed a bill that’s designed to help the state’s agritourism industry.

The Ohio Farm Bureau Federation’s Brandon Kern says Ohio is full of agritourism opportunities.

“Your fall fest, your corn mazes, your you-pick operations, anything that’s bringing in the public on to the farm to experience agriculture in a direct way,” Kern said.

Kern says more than $2 million was spent on agritourism in 2012.

The bill that lawmakers have passed would give farmers some legal immunity in cases of people getting hurt while on the farms, and it would insure farmers could retain their current status as agriculture for tax purposes. It now moves to Gov. John Kasich for approval.

Jo Ingles is a professional journalist who covers politics and Ohio government for the Ohio Public Radio and Television for the Ohio Public Radio and Television Statehouse News Bureau. She reports on issues of importance to Ohioans including education, legislation, politics, and life and death issues such as capital punishment. Jo started her career in Louisville, Kentucky in the mid 80’s when she helped produce a televised presidential debate for ABC News, worked for a creative services company and served as a general assignment report for a commercial radio station. In 1989, she returned back to her native Ohio to work at the WOSU Stations in Columbus where she began a long resume in public radio.