PREPROPOSAL STATEMENT OF INQUIRY
Subject of Possible Rule Making: The department will propose amendments to chapter 16-461 WAC that repeals WAC 16-403-280 Adoption of United States standards as state standards, that adopt the new United States Standards for Grades of Apples, which were effective on December 19, 2002.
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: By adopting the United States standards for grades of apples certified under state standards will meet United States standards. This means they can be marketed in areas that require only United States grades without having to be recertified. This simplified process should make marketing Washington state apples easier and should reduce the cost of marketing to the industry.
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 provide oversight to USDA licensed state cooperators like the department.
Process for Developing New Rule: Fruit and vegetable inspection program staff will develop the proposed rule amendments. Interested parties will be able 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