beerThe Finger Lakes region is home to some of the most esteemed craft breweries, distilleries, cideries and wineries in our state. Since 2014, an informal network called the Rochester Craft Beverage Trail has existed to help support and better develop this significant piece of our local economy. Now, this support is on the cusp of becoming state law.

This week, NYS Senator Pam Helming co-sponsored and helped pass a bill (S.1346) drafted by Senator Rich Funke that would designate the Rochester Craft Beverage Trail in State Highway Law. This designation would provide a boost to the already successful promotional efforts by securing branded signage throughout the region. If passed by the Assembly and signed into law, signs advertising the trail would appear on Interstates 390, 490, 590 and 90, all areas of frequent traffic and use.

"The Rochester Craft Beverage Trail is a perfect example of how state legislators can work with the private sector to boost our economy," Helming said. "The trail has already helped promote so many of our local brewers, distillers and vintners. By officially designating the trail with highway signs, we can better connect tourists and residents to the successful local entrepreneurs right here in our backyard."

Helming said helping promote and grow the local economy was a top priority in her campaign for Senate.

"Official designation of the Rochester Craft Beverage Trail is just the first, small step in doing that," she said. "Going forward, I plan on doing even more to help not only our craft breweries, distilleries, cideries and wineries, but all our local job creators."