WSR 00-18-102

PREPROPOSAL STATEMENT OF INQUIRY

DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE


[ Filed September 6, 2000, 8:29 a.m. ]

Subject of Possible Rule Making: Amendment of existing rules for grape virus quarantine in chapter 16-483 WAC.

Statutes Authorizing the Agency to Adopt Rules on this Subject: Chapters 17.24, 15.13 RCW.

Reasons Why Rules on this Subject may be Needed and What They Might Accomplish: Sophisticated new methods of testing have found one of the viruses currently addressed in the rule (the disease, stem pitting) in certified planting stock from California, which has historically supplied significant portions of the planting stock for Washington vineyards. Unless the rule is changed, grower access to this important source of stock may be stopped. Information about the prevalence of stem pitting already present in this state is currently being developed. It may be necessary to change the rule to bring it into compliance with nationally accepted principles of plant quarantine and NAPPO standards. It may also be necessary to change the rule to bring it into compliance with current industry and program practices.

Other Federal and State Agencies that Regulate this Subject and the Process Coordinating the Rule with These Agencies: USDA APHIS administers federal quarantine rules regarding international and domestic movement of plant diseases. However, as a practical matter USDA leaves the administration of interstate quarantine activities to state programs. Copies of any proposed rules will be distributed for review to affected states.

Process for Developing New Rule: Washington State Department of Agriculture representatives discuss the issue and any rules proposals with industry groups, other stakeholders, and affected government agencies and then publish the rule proposal.

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

September 6, 2000

Mary A. Martin Toohey

Assistant Director

Washington State Code Reviser's Office