ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Legislation before New York state lawmakers would create a new tax break for restaurants that donate oyster shells for environmental conservation.

Under the bill, the state would award a 10-cent tax credit for every pound of shells, up to $1,000 worth of tasty seafood.

Old shells provide a vital habitat for new oysters to grow and form new shells.

(New York Oyster Week / Facebook)

Conservation groups around the country have used old shells for oyster restoration projects. Oysters are noted for their ability to act as natural water filters, improving water quality in polluted areas.

One of the bill’s sponsors, Democrat Linda Rosenthal of Manhattan, said Monday that the proposal was inspired by the work of local students concerned about protecting the Hudson River.

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