PREPROPOSAL STATEMENT OF INQUIRY
Subject of Possible Rule Making: As part of its ongoing Executive Order 97-02 rule review, the department will propose amending chapter 16-406 WAC, Standards for apricots, that repeals WAC 16-406-001 Promulgation, which is outdated and no longer needed; and amends WAC 16-406-025 Applications of tolerances, so it is consistent with the tolerance requirements in subsection (1) of WAC 16-406-020 Tolerances.
Statutes Authorizing the Agency to Adopt Rules on this Subject: Chapter 15.17 RCW, Standards of grades and packs and chapter 34.05 RCW, Administrative Procedure Act.
Reasons Why Rules on this Subject may be Needed and What They Might Accomplish: During the course of an Executive Order 97-02 rule review, the fruit and vegetable inspection program noted that the tolerance requirements in WAC 16-406-020(1) and 16-406-025 were not consistent but should be. By deleting the reference to "not more than one apricot" in WAC 16-406-025 (2) and (3), the tolerance requirements in both sections will be consistent and the rule will be easier to understand and apply.
Other Federal and State Agencies that Regulate this Subject and the Process Coordinating the Rule with These Agencies: The United States Department of Agriculture's Agriculture Marketing Service, Fruit and Vegetable Program, and Fresh Products Branch and Federal Marketing Order 922 all regulate the certification of apricots. The United States Standards for Grades of Apricots provides for the same tolerance for serious damage with no restrictions.
Process for Developing New Rule: Fruit and vegetable inspection program staff will develop the proposed rule amendments. Interested parties will be able to comment on the proposal during the formal comment period and at the public hearing, the dates of which will be announced when the CR-102 is filed with the code reviser in September 2003.
Interested parties can participate in the decision to adopt the new rule and formulation of the proposed rule before publication by contacting Jim Quigley, Program Manager, Fruit and Vegetable Inspection Program, P.O. Box 42560, Olympia, WA 98504-2560, phone (360) 902-1833, fax (360) 902-2085.
July 22, 2003
Robert W. Gore