|State of Washington||58th Legislature||2004 Regular Session|
Read first time 02/02/2004. Referred to Committee on Agriculture.
TO THE HONORABLE GEORGE W. BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES,
AND TO THE PRESIDENT OF THE SENATE AND THE SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE OF
REPRESENTATIVES, AND TO THE SENATE AND HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES OF THE
UNITED STATES, IN CONGRESS ASSEMBLED, AND TO THE SECRETARY OF THE
UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE:
We, your Memorialists, the Senate and House of Representatives of the State of Washington, in legislative session assembled, respectfully represent and petition as follows:
WHEREAS, The recent positive test for bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) in a cow in Washington State has brought public attention to one of several types of transmissible spongiform encephalopathies (TSE) that occur in various animal species including chronic wasting disease in deer, and scrapie in sheep; and
WHEREAS, The State of Washington recognizes that addressing the all encompassing BSE and TSE related issues needs to be coordinated at the federal level, with cooperation by and input from each state including an identification of contributions that institutions in each state may make to an overall response; and
WHEREAS, The Washington Animal Disease Diagnostic Laboratory (WADDL) and Washington State University's College of Veterinary Medicine, in collaboration with USDA ARS scientists, have been on the cutting edge of research into many aspects of research over the wide gamut of TSE diseases; and
WHEREAS, Among their many accomplishments have been: (1) The development of the first and currently only practical live animal test for any TSE, that being the third eyelid test for scrapie; and (2) defining the distribution of abnormal prion in sheep and goat scrapie which will be needed eventually for the United States to be declared free of scrapie; and
WHEREAS, Another accomplishment is in chronic wasting disease (CWD), a TSE affecting deer, where the preliminary research was done for the development of what now is a commercially available diagnostic test for CWD; and
WHEREAS, In regards to BSE, the Washington Animal Disease Diagnostic Laboratory and College of Veterinary Medicine have collaborated with the USDA ARS Animal Disease Research Unit to develop an assay for BSE testing that has been used in Canada and the United States; and
WHEREAS, WADDL is a fully accredited laboratory and is one of twelve laboratories that is recognized as part of the national animal health laboratory network through homeland security, and any enhancements in this laboratory would also increase the capacity to respond to food safety or animal disease issues that may arise; and
WHEREAS, The public demand for research to answer the many questions generated by the recent discovery of a cow with BSE in Washington State will likely result in an expanded need for further scientific answers about the full range of TSEs, including the development of a test on live cattle for BSE, and the possibility of conducting fast surveillance tests for BSE that could be conducted in conjunction with the existing test administered for brucellosis;
NOW, THEREFORE, Your Memorialists respectfully pray that Congress and the United States Department of Agriculture be fully aware of the current expertise that exists as the Washington Animal Disease Diagnostic Laboratory and College of Veterinary Medicine at Washington State University and the head start this institution has to fulfill needs on projects related to TSEs including an ability to:
(1) Develop a BSE test for live cattle that will require a large animal ABSL3 biocontainment facility with an estimated cost of $25 million;
(2) Conduct an itemized list of enhanced TSE research projects costing approximately $2 million; or
(3) Administer a quick surveillance BSE testing program for the state or the region that would require USDA authorization including approval of testing protocols, and funding for personnel, equipment, working space, the purchase of test kits, with the overall cost dependent upon the number of tests to be preformed each year.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, That copies of this Memorial be immediately transmitted to the Honorable George W. Bush, President of the United States, the Secretary of the United States Department of Agriculture, the President of the United States Senate, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, and each member of Congress from the State of Washington.