WSR 09-14-123

PREPROPOSAL STATEMENT OF INQUIRY

DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE


[ Filed July 1, 2009, 9:16 a.m. ]

Subject of Possible Rule Making: Chapter 16-401 WAC, Nursery inspection fees, the department is considering increasing the nursery dealer licensing fees and requested inspection fees. In addition, the department may amend the existing language to increase its clarity and readability and update the language to conform to current industry and regulatory standards.

Statutes Authorizing the Agency to Adopt Rules on this Subject: RCW 15.13.260, 15.13.280, 15.13.370 and 15.14.015, chapter 34.05 RCW, and chapter 564, Laws of 2009.

Reasons Why Rules on this Subject may be Needed and What They Might Accomplish: During the 2009 legislative session, the Washington state legislature authorized (as required by Initiative 960) the Washington state department of agriculture to increase the nursery dealer licensing and plant pest inspection and testing fees as necessary to meet the actual costs of conducting business (see chapter 564, Laws of 2009).

This rule establishes the fees charged by the plant services program for activities authorized in chapters 15.13 and 15.14 RCW. The program's revenue is almost solely derived from inspection, testing, and license fees. An increase in fees would enable the program to cover the costs associated with performing these activities.

Other Federal and State Agencies that Regulate this Subject and the Process Coordinating the Rule with These Agencies: None.

Process for Developing New Rule: Department staff will discuss any proposed amendments with affected stakeholders. Affected stakeholders will also have an opportunity to submit written comments on the proposed rules during the public comment period and will be able to present oral testimony at the public hearing.

Interested parties can participate in the decision to adopt the new rule and formulation of the proposed rule before publication by contacting Mary A. Martin Toohey, Assistant Director, Plant Protection Division, Washington State Department of Agriculture, P.O. Box 42560, Olympia, WA 98504-2560, phone (360) 902-1907, fax (360) 902-2094, e-mail mtoohey@agr.wa.gov; or Tom Wessels, Program Manager, Plant Protection Division, Washington State Department of Agriculture, P.O. Box 42560, Olympia, WA 98504-2560, phone (360) 902-1984, fax (360) 902-2094, e-mail twessels@agr.wa.gov.

July 1, 2009

Mary A. Martin Toohey

Assistant Director

Washington State Code Reviser's Office