Stefanik legislation targets invasive species that threaten environment, economy

U.S. Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-NY) recently marked Invasive Species Awareness week by reintroducing two pieces of legislation that would help fight and raise awareness about the threat of invasive species and the damage they can do to the environment and U.S. economy.

The Stamp Out Invasive Species Act would direct the United States Postal Service to issue a “Combating Invasive Species Semipostal Stamp” to benefit programs from the Department of Agriculture and the Department of the Interior that combat invasive species.

“National Invasive Species Awareness Week is an important time to highlight the threats these invasives impose, and to renew our efforts to protect our natural ecosystems,” Stefanik, the co-chair of the Congressional Invasive Species Caucus, said. “Our environment is our lifeblood in the North Country and I am committed to preserving it for future generations.”

Stefanik also introduced a resolution expressing the House’s commitment to addressing threats that invasive species pose to ecosystems across the country.

“These important pieces of legislation will help raise awareness about the threats these invasive species play in our natural ecosystems and will help combat these predators,” Stefanik said. “This is an issue that must be addressed at the local, state and federal level, and I am proud to lead the effort in Congress.”

Approximately 50,000 non-native invasive animal and plant species have been introduced to the United States, costing more than $100 billion annually.

Fred Monroe, the executive director of the Adirondack Park Local Government Review Board, voiced support for Stefanik’s efforts to raise awareness about and to combat invasive species.

“The Review Board applauds Congresswoman Stefanik for her leadership in introducing a bill today expressing the commitment of the U.S. House of Representatives to work constructively to combat invasive species and the very serious threat they pose to the environment and economy of the nation and the Adirondack region,” Monroe said.

“Her companion bill to create a semipostal stamp to benefit programs to fight invasive species will help meet the urgent need of volunteers, not-for-profits and local governments for funding to preempt and prevent the introduction and spread of invasives,” he said.