WSR 03-07-090

PROPOSED RULES

DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE


[ Filed March 19, 2003, 8:39 a.m. ]

Original Notice.

Preproposal statement of inquiry was filed as WSR 03-03-121.

Title of Rule: WAC 16-328-008 Definitions, 16-328-010 Strawberry plant certification fees, and 16-328-011 Strawberry plant certification fees.

Purpose: This proposal increases strawberry plant certification fees within the fiscal growth factors for both fiscal year 2003 (3.29%) and fiscal year 2004 (3.2%) in WAC 16-328-011. In addition, it repeals WAC 16-328-010 because it sets forth a fee schedule that was only in effect for one day (June 30, 2001) and was superceded on July 1, 2001, by the current fee schedule. Finally, it rewrites WAC 16-328-008 and 16-328-011 to improve clarity as required by Executive Order 97-02.

Statutory Authority for Adoption: Chapters 15.14 and 34.05 RCW.

Statute Being Implemented: Chapter 15.14 RCW.

Summary: The proposed amendments increase application and hourly inspection fees within the fiscal growth factors for fiscal year 2003 and fiscal year 2004. The increase will occur in two stages, with one increase of a maximum of 3.29% effective until June 30, 2003 and the second increase of a maximum of 3.2% effective July 1, 2003.

Reasons Supporting Proposal: Current fee levels are not adequate to cover the costs of strawberry plant certification. The Nursery Advisory Committee, which is appointed by the director of the Department of Agriculture to advise the department on nursery related issues, supports the proposal to raise fees within the fiscal growth factors for fiscal year 2003 and fiscal year 2004.

Name of Agency Personnel Responsible for Drafting: Mary Toohey, 1111 Washington Street, Olympia, WA 98504-2560, (360) 902-1907; Implementation and Enforcement: Tom Wessels, 1111 Washington Street, Olympia, WA 98504-2560, (360) 902-1984.

Name of Proponent: Washington State Department of Agriculture, governmental.

Rule is not necessitated by federal law, federal or state court decision.

Explanation of Rule, its Purpose, and Anticipated Effects: Currently, there is only one nursery that participates in the strawberry planting stock certification program, which is created by these rules. Participation in the production of certified planting stock is entirely voluntary for any producer of strawberry plants. Enrollment and compliance with the requirements of this fee-for-service program are intended to produce a known, high quality agricultural product apparently free of specified diseases and other pests, that normally commands a market premium.

Proposal Changes the Following Existing Rules: This rule establishes the fee schedule for strawberry plant certification. Proposed changes will increase both application and hourly fees by a maximum of the fiscal growth factor for fiscal year 2003, effective until June 30, 2003, and another increase in fees by a maximum of the fiscal growth factor for fiscal year 2004, effective July 1, 2003. It also rewrites sections of the rule to improve clarity as required by Executive Order 97-02.

No small business economic impact statement has been prepared under chapter 19.85 RCW. RCW 19.85.030 (1)(a) requires that an agency must prepare a small business economic impact statement (SBEIS) for proposed rules that impose a more than minor cost on businesses in an industry. Analysis of the economic effects of the proposed rule amendments demonstrate that the changes will not be more than a minor cost on the regulated industry and, therefore, an SBEIS is not required.

RCW 34.05.328 does not apply to this rule adoption. The Washington State Department of Agriculture is not a listed agency under RCW 34.05.328 (5)(a)(i).

Hearing Location: Washington State Department of Agriculture, 1111 Washington Street S.E., Natural Resources Building, 2nd Floor, Conference Room 205, Olympia, WA 98504-2560, on April 22, 2003, at 10:00 a.m.

Assistance for Persons with Disabilities: Contact Henri Gonzales by April 8, 2003, TDD (360) 902-1996.

Submit Written Comments to: Henri Gonzales, Washington State Department of Agriculture, P.O. Box 42560, Olympia, WA 98504-2560, fax (360) 902-2094, e-mail hgonzales@agr.wa.gov, by April 22, 2003.

Date of Intended Adoption: May 6, 2003.

March 19, 2003

Mary A. Martin Toohey

Assistant Director

OTS-6182.2


AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending WSR 00-19-034, filed 9/12/00, effective 10/13/00)

WAC 16-328-008   Definitions.   (((1))) "Department" means the department of agriculture of the state of Washington.

(((2))) "Director" means the director of the department of agriculture or a duly appointed representative.

(((3))) "Fairly clean" means that the roots are not matted or caked with dirt.

(((4))) "Fairly fresh" means that the roots and petioles are not excessively wilted or otherwise damaged.

(((5))) "Fairly well trimmed runners and petioles" means that the length of each runner and petiole is three inches or less.

(((6))) "Firm" means that the crowns are not soft or spongy, although they may yield to slight pressure.

(((7))) Free from damage by:

(a) "Sunburn" means that the roots are not damaged by sunburn or scald, but slight discoloration may be present.

(b) "Mold" means that the plants are free from excessive mold or decay. Plants slightly affected by mold may be allowed.

(c) "Freezing injury" means that the roots are of a normal color, and the plant is only moderately affected by discolored roots which may affect its normal growth. Black roots caused by disease are not permitted.

(d) "Broken or split crowns, mechanical injury" means there is no breaking or severance of the crown from the root section, or splitting of the crown, or other mechanical injury that would affect the normal growth of the plant.

(((8))) "Index" means to test for virus infection by means of inoculation from the plant to be tested to an indicator plant, or by any other method accepted by the department.

(((9))) "Indicator plant" means any herbaceous or woody plant used to index or test for virus infection.

(((10))) "Moist" means that the plants are reasonably turgid and not dried to a degree ((than)) that would affect normal growth.

(((11))) "Nuclear stock" means strawberry plants that have been indexed and found free of known viruses and virus-like diseases by United States Department of Agriculture personnel or other personnel acceptable to the department. Nuclear plants must be reindexed for virus and virus-like diseases at least every three years and maintained under conditions that would ensure freedom from infection.

(((12))) "Off-type" means appearing by visual examination to be different from the species or variety listed on the application or exhibiting symptoms of a genetic or nontransmissible disorder.

(((13))) "Similar varietal characteristics" means that the plants have the same general character of growth.

(((14))) "Tolerance" means the maximum acceptable percentage of planting stock that is diseased, infected by plant pests, defective, or off-type based on visual inspection or laboratory testing by the director or other authorized person.

(((15))) "Virus-like" means a graft-transmissible disorder resembling a virus disease, including, but not limited to, diseases caused by viroids and phytoplasmas.

[Statutory Authority: Chapter 15.14 RCW. 00-19-034, 16-328-008, filed 9/12/00, effective 10/13/00; 87-13-016 (Order 1932), 16-328-008, filed 6/9/87; Order 1216, 16-328-008, filed 10/18/71, effective 11/18/71.]


AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending WSR 01-11-032, filed 5/8/01, effective 6/8/01)

WAC 16-328-011   Strawberry plant certification fees.   ((Effective July 1, 2001,)) The strawberry plant certification fees are as follows:


Effective until

June 30, 2003

Effective

July 1, 2003

Application fee $136.34 $140.70
Hourly inspection rate $27.26 $28.10

(1) Certification application fee. The applicant must furnish all information requested on the application for inspection, including, but not limited to, the crop, variety, class planted, date planted, source of seed or plants, acreage, field number, applicant's name and address, applicant's signature, and date of application. The applicant must allow the department to take plants or plant parts from any planting for inspection or testing purposes. A separate application is required for each cultivar and/or lot entered for certification. Applications for inspection must be filed with the Plant Services Program, P.O. Box 42560, Olympia, Washington, 98504-2560 by June 15 of each year and be accompanied by ((a $132.00)) the application fee.

(2) Inspection fees. ((The inspection fee is $26.40 per hour)) The department will conduct certification inspections at the hourly inspection rate plus mileage charged at a rate established by the state office of financial management. Testing fees will be charged at the rate established in chapter 16-470 WAC. Inspection and testing fees are payable upon completion of work. Billing may be arranged subject to department policies and processes.

(3) The department will remove any applicant from the certification program for failing to pay fees when due.

(4) The department will not accept applications from growers owing the department for previous fees.

[Statutory Authority: Chapter 15.14 RCW. 01-11-032, 16-328-011, filed 5/8/01, effective 6/8/01.]


REPEALER

     The following section of the Washington Administrative Code is repealed:
WAC 16-328-010 Strawberry plant certification fees.

Legislature Code Reviser 

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Washington State Code Reviser's Office