Effective Date of Rule: January 1, 2010.
Purpose: This rule-making order amends chapter 16-401 WAC by adding a new section that establishes annual licensing and assessment fees for Christmas tree growers. During the 2007 legislative session, at the request of the Christmas tree industry, the Washington state legislature adopted amendments to chapter 15.13 RCW (see chapter 335, Laws of 2007) relative to Christmas tree grower licensure. This legislation authorizes the department to adopt rules for annual license fees that may include a base fee and per acre assessment and fee collection methods. During the 2009 legislative session, the legislature authorized (as required by Initiative 960) the Washington state department of agriculture to establish Christmas tree grower licensing fees (see chapter 564, Laws of 2009).
Statutory Authority for Adoption: RCW 15.13.311, chapter 34.05 RCW, chapter 335, Laws of 2007, chapter 564, Laws of 2009.
Adopted under notice filed as WSR 09-19-142 on September 23, 2009.
Number of Sections Adopted in Order to Comply with Federal Statute: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; Federal Rules or Standards: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; or Recently Enacted State Statutes: New 1, Amended 0, Repealed 0.
Number of Sections Adopted at Request of a Nongovernmental Entity: New 1, Amended 0, Repealed 0.
Number of Sections Adopted on the Agency's Own Initiative: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.
Number of Sections Adopted in Order to Clarify, Streamline, or Reform Agency Procedures: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.
Number of Sections Adopted Using Negotiated Rule Making: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; Pilot Rule Making: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; or Other Alternative Rule Making: New 1, Amended 0, Repealed 0.
Date Adopted: November 4, 2009.
WAC 16-401-045 Christmas tree grower license fees. (1) All Christmas tree growers, except those exempted in subsection (5) of this section, must obtain a Christmas tree grower license.
(2) The licensing period for a Christmas tree grower license is February 1st to January 31st.
(3) The annual fee for a Christmas tree grower license is forty dollars plus an acreage assessment of three dollars per acre. The annual Christmas tree grower license fee for any person may not exceed five thousand dollars.
(4) Growers must submit an application for Christmas tree grower license and the annual fee to the department by February 1st.
(5) Any Christmas tree grower owning Christmas trees, whose business consists solely of retail sales to the ultimate consumer, is exempt from the requirements of this section if:
(a) The grower has less than one acre of Christmas trees; or
(b) The grower harvests, by u-cut or otherwise, fewer than four hundred Christmas trees per year.