by Jennifer Swift
Jun 11, 2013
08:14 PMConnecticut Politics
Nearby States Help Move Connecticut GMO Bill Closer to Law
Joe Amarante/New Haven Register
File: State Rep. Phil Miller speaks at an event in Hartford calling for GMO labeling.
More states are following Connecticut’s lead in adopting legislation requiring genetically modified foods to be labeled as such, which in turn may help the state to turn its own bill into law.
Connecticut’s bill, passed in the senate with unanimous approval and near-unanimous consent in the house earlier this month, included provisions that four other states in the Northeast must also enact similar legislation in order for it to take effect. One of those four must border Connecticut, and the states’ combined population must exceed 20 million based on the 2010 census.
On Tuesday, Maine’s house of representatives voted 141-4 to pass a GMO bill, which will head to the senate for approval. The state house in Vermont also recently passed a similar bill.
Maine and Vermont’s populations, according to the 2010, census are around 1.3 million and 608,000 respectively.
Connecticut was the first to pass the legislation in both chambers, though not the first to introduce such legislation. In New York there is similarly proposed legislation, which would put Connecticut close to the population requirement.
In a news release Tuesday, Connecticut Senate President Donald E. Williams (D-Brooklyn) said Connecticut’s bill is “paving the way for other states to act.”
“Today’s overwhelming vote in the Maine House of Representatives is just the next step in ensuring that the American people know if the food they’re feeding their families has been genetically modified,” he said.