New Jersey Audubon celebrates the strong bipartisan support of the State Senate, which has overwhelmingly supported legislation that reduces the threat of invasive plant species on our state’s roadsides.

The bill. (S. 227) would require transportation authorities to use native vegetation for landscaping, land management, or habitat restoration. Native plants provide a greater benefit to wildlife, allowing it to thrive, while reducing ecosystem risks and economic impacts posed by non-native vegetation.

While not all non-native plant species become invasive, at best they do not provide critical food resources for New Jersey wildlife and pollinators, offer little habitat value and may compete with native plants. Meanwhile, native plants provide berries, seeds, and nectar to wildlife throughout many seasons, ensuring a healthier environment along our highways and throughout New Jersey.

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The bill would regulate the work of the state Department of Transportation, the New Jersey Turnpike Authority and the South Jersey Transportation Authority.

We salute the Senate for working to protect a habitat corridor for migrating birds and butterflies.  The bill has two primary sponsors: Sen. Jim Holzapfel (R-Ocean) and Sen. Diane Allen (R-Burlington), as well as other sponsors in the Senate

We urge the state Assembly to pass this bill and move it to the governor’s desk.