Monday, January 6, 2020

Agricultural Law Weekly Review —January 2, 2019

Written by:  
Brook Duer—Staff Attorney
Audry Thompson—Research Assistant
The Agricultural Law Weekly Review provides an update of recent agricultural law developments from the local, state, national, and international levels.  Subscribe to the ALWR at pennstateaglaw.com

Industrial Hemp: USDA Issues its First Approvals of State Hemp Production Plans
On December 27, 2019, USDA announced the first approvals of six state and/or tribal Hemp Production Plans submitted pursuant to its October 31, 2019, Interim Final Rule on U.S. Domestic Hemp Production.  Three tribal plans were approved as well as three state plans -- for Louisiana, New Jersey and Ohio.  USDA maintains a web page titled “Status of State and Tribal Hemp Production Plans for USDA Approval,” containing status information for 33 states including electronic copies of the three approved state plans.  Seventeen states are listed as “Under Review:” Alabama, Arizona, Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas, Washington and Wyoming.  Eight states are listed as “Drafting a Plan for USDA Review:” California, Colorado, Florida, Hawaii, Illinois, Utah, Virginia and West Virginia.  Four states are referenced as “State will continue to operate under the 2014 pilot:” Maine, Minnesota, Missouri and New Mexico.  Maryland’s entry states “Growers will use the USDA hemp program.”  This means Maryland has chosen to decline state government involvement in hemp production regulation, a permissible option under the Interim Final Rule. 

Industrial Hemp: EPA Issues Its First Approvals of Pesticides Registered for Hemp Use
On December 20, 2019, EPA announced that it has approved the first pesticides to be registered for use on hemp.  A link to the list of ten products appears on the EPA’s Pesticide Registration web page, and the link lists the products by registration number, registration applicant, active ingredients, and product type.  Nine of the listed products are biopesticides, and one is a conventional pesticide.  EPA states that, as it receives and processes additional applications to amend product labels to add hemp use, the list will be updated. 

Industrial Hemp:  USDA Announces New 2020 Crop Insurance Option for Hemp Growers 
On December 29, 2019, USDA’s Risk Management Agency (RMA) announced a new crop insurance option for hemp grown for fiber, grain, or CBD oil for the 2020 crop year in select counties of 21 states (Alabama, California, Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, and Wisconsin).  This 2020 pilot program coverage will be a form of Multi-Peril Crop Insurance (MPCI) and will provide Actual Production History (APH) coverage, requiring at least one prior crop year of hemp production and a production contract with a confirmed buyer.  Hemp that tests over the legal THC limit will not be considered an insurable loss, and hemp will not qualify for replant or prevented planting payments.  This coverage option is in addition to the previously-announced Whole-Farm Revenue Protection coverage, which also will include hemp in 2020. 

Food Labeling: USDA Issues Two New Compliance Guidelines on Meat, Poultry and Egg Labeling
On December 27, 2019, USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) issued an updated version of a compliance guideline titled “Food Safety and Inspection Service Labeling Guideline on Documentation Needed to Substantiate Animal Raising Claims for Label Submissions.” 
Public notification of the updated guideline was simultaneously printed in the Federal Register at 84 FR 71359.  A public comment period is offered on only one portion of the updated guideline, specifically, “comments relevant to clarification provided in this notice on the label claim “free range” for poultry products.”  The comment period closes on February 25, 2020.  In addition, On December 30, 2019, USDA’s FSIS issued an updated version of another compliance guideline titled “Updated Labeling Guideline on Statements That Bioengineered or Genetically Modified Ingredients or Animal Feed Were Not Used in the Production of Meat, Poultry, or Egg Products.”  Public notification of the updated guideline was simultaneously printed in the Federal Register at 84 FR 71890.  The issuance of this updated compliance guideline is not subject to a public comment period.  Both of these compliance guidelines are the product of an initial publication in 2016 and resultant comments and input received in the interim.  

From National Ag Law Authorities & Sources: 
Brigit Rollins, Roundup Round 2: California Glyphosate Law Under Fire (December 18, 2019). 

Penn State Research:

Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture:

Pennsylvania Executive Agencies—Actions and Notices: 
Department of Agriculture
49 Pa.B. 7590 “Temporary Order Designating Dangerous Transmissible Diseases” Notice (December 28, 2019).

Department of Environmental Protection 
49 Pa.B. 7662 “Environmental Assessment Approval for PENNVEST Funding Consideration” Notice (December 28, 2019).
49 Pa.B. 7629 “Bid Opportunity [Abandoned Mine Reclamation Project, Shettleston, Snow Shoe Township, Centre County]” Notice (December 28, 2019).
49 Pa.B. 7629 “Availability of Technical Guidance” Notice (December 28, 2019).
49 Pa.B. 7592 “The Clean Streams Law and The Federal Clean Water Act:
Applications for National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Permits And Water Quality Management (WQM) Permits” Notice—Applications (December 28, 2019). 

Department of Labor and Industry
49 Pa.B. 7543 “Public Comment on the Pennsylvania Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act Combined State Plan for 2020—2024” Notice (December 21, 2019). 

Department of Revenue
49 Pa.B. 7631 “Interest Rate Notice” Notice (December 28, 2019).

Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission
49 Pa.B. 7555 “Wastewater Service” Notice (December 21, 2019). 

State Conservation Commission 
49 Pa.B. 7664 “Action on Odor Management Plans for Concentrated Animal Operations and Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations and Volunteers Complying with the Commonwealth's Facility Odor Management Program” Notice (December 28, 2019). 

Pennsylvania Legislature
H.B. 1223 “An Act providing for the creation of keystone opportunity dairy zones to facilitate the economic development of Pennsylvania's dairy industry . . . .” Referred to Agriculture and Rural Affairs [Senate] (December 26, 2019).
H.B. 1224 “An Act amending the act of April 28, 1937 (P.L.417, No.105), known as the Milk Marketing Law, in purpose, short title and definitions, further providing for definitions and construction; in general powers of the board, providing for coordination with Department of Revenue; and, in prices of milk, further providing for cooperatives.” Referred to Agriculture and Rural Affairs [Senate] (December 26, 2019).
H.B. 1348 “An Act providing for limited civil liability for agritourism activity providers, for notice of limited civil liability and for acknowledgment of limited civil liability.” Re-reported as committed [House] (December 18, 2019). 
H.B. 1971 “An Act amending the act of May 1, 1984, known as the Pennsylvania Safe Drinking Water Act, further providing for definitions” Laid on Table [House] (December 18, 2019). 
H.B. 1972 “An Act amending Title 3 (Agriculture) of the Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes, in food protection, further providing for rules and regulations” Laid on Table [House] (December 18, 2019).
H.B. 523 “An Act amending the act of June 13, 1836 (P.L.551, No.169), referred to as the General Road Law, further providing for repair of private roads” Removed from Table [House] (December 18, 2019).
S.B. 915 “An Act amending Title 3 (Agriculture) of the Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes, repealing provisions relating to fertilizer; providing for fertilizer; in soil and plant amendment, further providing for disposition of funds; in seed, further providing for disposition of funds; establishing the Agronomic Regulatory Account within the General Fund; imposing duties on the Department of Agriculture; and making conforming amendments” Referred to Agriculture and Rural Affairs [Senate] (December 18, 2019).
H.B. 2149 “An Act amending the act of October 21, 1988 (P.L.1036, No.116), known as the Hardwoods Development Council Act, further providing for Hardwoods Development Council” Referred to Agriculture and Rural Affairs [House] (December 18, 2019).
H.B. 2148 “An Act amending the act of June 22, 2001 (P.L.390, No.29), known as the Conservation and Preservation Easements Act, further providing for purpose of act, for definitions, for creation, transfer and duration; providing for forest conservation easements; and further providing for judicial and related actions, for validity, for applicability, for uniformity of application and construction and for coal interests not affected and notice of mineral interests required” Referred to Agriculture and Rural Affairs [House] (December 18, 2019).

Federal Executive Agencies—Actions and Notices: 
Agriculture Department 
84 FR 71099 “Semiannual Regulatory Agenda, Fall 2019” Proposed Rule (December 26, 2019). 

Agricultural Marketing Service 
84 FR 71829 “Beef Promotion and Research; Reapportionment” Proposed Rule—Comment Period (December 30, 2019). 
84 FR 69295 “Establishment of a Domestic Hemp Production Program” Rule—Comment Period (December 18, 2019). 

Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service
84 FR 71358 “Addition of Serbia to the List of Regions Affected with African Swine Fever” Notice (December 27, 2019).
84 FR 71358 “Addition of Burma (Myanmar) to the List of Regions Affected with African Swine Fever” Notice (December 27, 2019).
Commodity Credit Corporation
84 FR 70393 “Technical Assistance for Specialty Crops Program” Rule (December 23, 2019). 

Employment and Training Administration
84 FR 69773 “Post-Initial Determinations Regarding Eligibility to Apply for Trade Adjustment Assistance” Notice (December 19, 2019).  
84 FR 69774 “Labor Certification Process for the Temporary Employment of Aliens in Agriculture in the United States: 2020 Adverse Effect Wage Rates for Non-Range Occupations” Notice (December 19, 2019).
84 FR 69768 “Labor Certification Process for the Temporary Employment of Aliens in Agriculture in the United States: 2020 Adverse Effect Wage Rate for Range Occupations” Notice (December 19, 2019).
84 FR 69775 “Investigations Regarding Eligibility to Apply for Worker Adjustment Assistance” Notice (December 19, 2019).
84 FR 69769 “Notice of Determinations Regarding Eligibility to Apply for Trade Adjustment Assistance” Notice (December 19, 2019).

Environmental Protection Agency
84 FR 71407 “Proposed Settlement Agreements, Clean Water Act Claims” Notice—Comment Period (December 27, 2019).
84 FR 70429 “Fenpropathrin; Pesticide Tolerances for Emergency Exemptions” Rule—Comments Accepted (December 23, 2019). 
84 FR 69741 “Pesticide Registration Review; Interim Decisions for Several Pesticides and Case Closure for Meat Meal; Notice of Availability” Notice (December 19, 2019). 
84 FR 70023 “Flutianil; Pesticide Tolerances” Rule (December 20, 2019). 

Federal Emergency Management Agency
84 FR 71444 “Proposed Flood Hazard Determinations” Notice—Comment Period (December 27, 2019). 
84 FR 71446 “Changes in Flood Hazard Determinations” Notice (December 27, 2019). 
84 FR 71440 “Changes in Flood Hazard Determinations” Notice (December 27, 2019). 

Fish and Wildlife Service
84 FR 72380 “Endangered and Threatened Species; Receipt of Recovery Permit Applications” Notice—Comment Period (December 31, 2019). 
84 FR 69762 “Migratory Birds; Double-Crested Cormorant Increased Take Limits for Depredation Permits in the Central and Eastern United States” Notice (December 19, 2019). 
84 FR 69707 “Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Five Species Not Warranted for Listing as Endangered or Threatened Species” Proposed Rule (December 19, 2019). 
84 FR 69713 “Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; 90-Day Findings for Two Species” Proposed Rule (December 19, 2019). 

Food and Drug Administration
84 FR 72230 “Food Labeling: Serving Sizes of Foods That Can Reasonably Be Consumed at One Eating Occasion, Reference Amounts Customarily Consumed, Serving Size-Related Issues, Dual-Column Labeling, and Miscellaneous Topics; Guidance for Industry; Availability” Rule (December 31, 2019). 
84 FR 71834 “Cheeses and Related Cheese Products; Proposal To Permit the Use of Ultrafiltered Milk; Reopening the Comment Period” Proposed Rule—Comment Period (December 30, 2019). 
84 FR 69620 “Listing of Color Additives Exempt From Certification; Soy Leghemoglobin” Rule (December 19, 2019). 

Food and Nutrition Service
84 FR 70930 “Proposed Collection; Comment Request-Information Collection for the Child and Adult Care Food Program” Notice—Comment Period (December 26, 2019). 

Food and Safety and Inspection Service 
84 FR 71359 “Food Safety and Inspection Service Labeling Guideline on Documentation Needed To Substantiate Animal Raising Claims for Label Submission” Notice—Comment Period (December 27, 2019). 
84 FR 71890 “Updated Labeling Guideline on Statements That Bioengineered or Genetically Modified Ingredients or Animal Feed Were Not Used in the Production of Meat, Poultry, or Egg Products” Notice (December 30, 2019). 

Land Management Bureau
84 FR 69389 “Notice of Filing of Plats of Surveys; Eastern States” Notice (December 18, 2019). 

National Institute of Food and Agriculture
84 FR 70493 “Solicitation of Input From Stakeholders on the Federally Recognized Tribes Extension Program-FRTEP” Notice—Comment Period (December 23, 2019). 

Office of U.S. Trade Representative
84 FR 72102 “Request for Comments Concerning the Extension of Particular Exclusions Granted Under the March 2019 Product Exclusion Notice From the $34 Billion Action Pursuant to Section 301: China's Acts, Policies, and Practices Related to Technology Transfer, Intellectual Property, and Innovation” Notice—Request for Comment (December 30, 2019). 

Rural Business-Cooperative Service
84 FR 71297 “Advanced Biofuel Payment Program” Rule (December 27, 2019). 
84 FR 69353 “Notice of Contract Proposals (NOCP) for the 9005 Advanced Biofuel Payment Program for Fiscal Years 2019 and 2020” Notice (December 18, 2019). 

Rural Housing Service
84 FR 70881 “Single Family Housing Guaranteed Loan Program” Rule (December 26, 2019). 

Small Business Administration
84 FR 69446 “Administrative Declaration of a Disaster for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania” Notice (December 18, 2019). 

U.S. House Agriculture Committee Actions: 
H.R.5506 “Hawaii Invasive Species Protection Act” Referred to House Committee on Agriculture (December 19, 2019). 
H.R.5430 “United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement Implementation Act” Passed House (December 19, 2019).
H.R.5174 “State Sponsored Visa Pilot Program Act of 2019” Referred to the Subcommittee on Immigration and Citizenship [House] (December 19, 2019). 
H.Res.775 “Recognizing and honoring Smokey Bear's 75 years of service to the United States and commitment to preventing unwanted human-caused wildfires and promoting forest health” Referred to Committee on Agriculture & Committee on Natural Resources (December 19, 2019). 
H.R.5486 “Broadband Internet for Small Ports Act” Referred to Committee on Agriculture & Committee on Energy and Commerce (December 18, 2019). 
H.R.5484 “COLA's Don't Count Act of 2019” Referred to the House Committee on Agriculture (December 18, 2019).
H.R.5474 “Shawnee Wilderness Designation Act” Referred to Committee on Agriculture & Committee on Energy and Commerce (December 18, 2019). 

U.S. Senate Agriculture, Nutrition, And Forestry Committee Actions: 
S.3141 “A bill to amend the Bill Emerson Good Samaritan Food Donation Act to clarify and expand food donation, and for other purposes” Read twice and referred to the Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry (December 19, 2019).
S.3106 “A bill to amend the Forest and Rangeland Renewable Resources Planning Act of 1974 to promote reforestation following unplanned events on Federal land, and for other purposes” Read twice and referred to the Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry (December 19, 2019).
S.3094 “A bill to amend the Rural Electrification Act of 1936 to authorize the Administrator of the Rural Utilities Service to make telecommunications grants for the collection of broadband infrastructure data by local governments, economic development or other community organizations, electric or telephone cooperatives, and small internet providers, and for other purposes” Read twice and referred to the Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry (December 18, 2019).
S.3076 “An original bill to release a federal reversionary interest in Chester County, Tennessee, to manage certain Federal land in Bath County, Virginia, and for other purposes” Placed on Senate Legislative Calendar under General Orders (December 17, 2019). 
S.3075 “Shawnee Wilderness Designation Act” Read twice and referred to the Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry (December 17, 2019).

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