[Left]: Rep. Pat Meehan (R-Pa.) accepts the 2014 Agricultural Retailers Association Legislator of the Year award from ARA Past-Chairman Gary Farrell of Ag Enterprise Supply during a visit to the Congressman's office Feb. 3. His Senate counterpart, Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.) accepts the Legislator of the Year award from ARA President and CEO Daren Coppock in a separate presentation earlier in the day.
[Left]: Rep. Pat Meehan (R-Pa.) accepts the 2014 Agricultural Retailers Association Legislator of the Year award from ARA Past-Chairman Gary Farrell of Ag Enterprise Supply during a visit to the Congressman's office Feb. 3. His Senate counterpart, Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.) accepts the Legislator of the Year award from ARA President and CEO Daren Coppock in a separate presentation earlier in the day.

Agricultural retailers cheered the passage of critical homeland security legislation in December. Last week, the Agricultural Retailers Association honored two legislators instrumental in passing the bill.

Rep. Patrick Meehan (R-Pa.) introduced the Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards Program Authorization and Accountability Act of 2014 in the House. As Chairman of the Senate Homeland Security Committee, Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.) helped lead the bill through Senate. The association recognized the Congressmen as ARA's 2014 Legislators of the Year for their efforts supporting agricultural interests while maintaining a strong stance on Homeland Security.

"The chemical facilities anti-terrorism legislation passed last year is a bipartisan achievement that improves the safety of these facilities and streamlines federal oversight," Meehan said. "I'm grateful to be recognized along with Sen. Carper for our work to get this important bill enacted into law."

Passage of the CFATS bill allows agribusinesses to confidently invest in facility security upgrades, employee surety programs and other capital expenditures needed to comply with CFATS standards.

"Last Congress, I was proud to work alongside my friend, Dr. Tom Coburn, on a bill that reauthorized and modernized the CFATS Program," Sen. Carper said. "Together, we worked with our colleagues in both chambers and helped enact legislation that bolsters our national security, while providing these vital industries with the regulatory certainty they need."

ARA presents its Legislator of the Year award annually to a member, or members, of Congress who champion legislation important to the agricultural retail industry. The award was presented as the ARA Board of Directors visited Congressional offices on earlier this month.

"It is an honor to present Rep. Meehan and Sen. Carper with ARA's Legislator of the Year award," said ARA President and CEO Daren Coppock.  "Their insistence agricultural interests be included in conversations about homeland security resulted in the appropriate and functional legislation on several issues important to ag retailers, including the long-term reauthorization of the CFATS program. We appreciate their dedication and continued support for the agriculture industry."

Carper and Meehan graciously accepted the recognition during separate presentations hosted in the offices of the Congressmen February 3.

"I'm honored to receive this award from ARA, and I look forward to continuing to support our farmers, growers, agricultural producers and chemical manufacturers, while ensuring the safety and security of the public, in Delaware and across the country," Carper added.