TRENTON -- A legislative package sponsored by Monmouth County Assemblyman Eric Houghtaling that would help protect the monarch butterfly population has received final legislative approval and will now head to the governor’s desk. The monarch butterfly population, which stops to feed in New Jersey as it migrates south, has dwindled dramatically due to a shortage of their primary food.
The first bill (A-2448) would establish a Milkweed for Monarch program in the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP), authorizing groups, organizations, businesses, and individuals to adopt assigned state-owned stormwater management basis to plant milkweed, the monarch butterfly’s primary food. The second bill, (A2449) would establish the Adopt a Monarch Butterfly Waystation program in the DEP, creating and protecting monarch habitations throughout New Jersey.
“New Jersey is one of the most important stops for the monarch butterflies as they migrate south, and to see their population drop so dramatically is startling,” said Houghtaling (D-Monmouth), who serves on the Assembly Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee, “Our responsibility is to be good stewards of the environment and of the many animals who call New Jersey home. This legislation will do just that, and protect and preserve the monarch population.”