Brook Duer—Staff Attorney
Audry Thompson—Research Assistant
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.
Agricultural Transportation: FMCSA Extends Trucking Hours of Service Waiver
On April 8, 2020, the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) issued an extension and expansion of its COVID-19 emergency declaration, most notably extending its applicability to May 15, 2020. The declaration was originally issued on March 13, 2020, and previously expanded on March 18, 2020. Of particular importance to agriculture, it provides, among other things, a waiver of hours of service requirements for the transport of food, feed, livestock, and “immediate precursor raw materials . . . that are required to be used for the manufacture” of food.
Food Safety: FDA Shell Egg Labeling Requirements Relaxed by Guidance Document
On April 3, 2020, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a Guidance for Industry announcing a temporary enforcement policy, intended to be in effect for the duration of the COVID-19 public health emergency declared by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), providing temporary flexibility regarding retail shell egg labeling. The six-page guidance states that due to increased demand for shell eggs for which compliant retail packaging is not available, FDA does not plan to object if eggs are sold in cartons or flats without legally-required labeling provided certain enumerated point-of-purchase display requirements are met. The guidance is issued pursuant to the March 25, 2020, FDA notice titled “Process for Making Available Guidance Documents Related to Coronavirus Disease 2019.” Other such FDA guidance documents are located on FDA’s website.
Animal Welfare: Kansas Ag Protection Law Provisions Permanently Enjoined
On April 3, 2020, the U.S. District Court for the District of Kansas, entered an Order granting a permanent injunction against enforcement of K.S.A. § 47-1827(b), (c) and (d), portions of Kansas’ so-called “ag-gag” statute that were previously declared unconstitutional the court’s prior January 22, 2020, Order which granted summary judgment against the State of Kansas. Animal Legal Defense Fund, et al. v. Laura Kelly, et al., No. 18-2657-KHV. For more information, see Agricultural Law Weekly Review, dated January 30, 2020, titled “Federal Court Strikes Down Kansas Agricultural Production Law.”
From National Ag Law Authorities & Sources:
Brigit Rollins, Decision Dispute: EPA Under Fire for Glyphosate Re-Approval (April 2, 2020).
Kristine A. Tidgren, Paycheck Protection Program Offers Forgivable Loans for Eligible Small Businesses (April 5, 2020).
Roger A. McEowen, Retirement-Related Provisions of the CARES Act (April 6, 2020).
Penn State Research & News:
Matthew Carroll, Scientists tap unused energy source to power smart sensor networks (Mar. 31, 2020).
Gail McCormick, Efforts to control livestock disease should focus on management style, not age (April 6, 2020).
AGENCY PRESS RELEASES—STATE/FEDERAL
Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture Press Releases:
Pennsylvania Waives Spay/Neuter Requirement for Pet Adoptions, Conserves PPE for Human Healthcare Professionals (April 2, 2020).
Department of Agriculture Reassures Pennsylvanians: COVID-19 Not Transmissible through Food, Supply Chain is Secure (April 2, 2020).
U.S. Department of Agriculture Press Releases:
USDA Proposes National List of Reportable Animal Diseases (April 1, 2020).
USDA Invests $65 Million in Rural Community Facilities in 14 States (April 2, 2020).
USDA Announces Second Application Window for Distance Learning and Telemedicine Grant Program Funding (April 3, 2020).
Pennsylvania Executive Agencies—Actions and Notices:
Department of Agriculture
50 Pa.B. 1933 “Agricultural Business Development Center Farm Vitality Planning Grant Program; Extension of Application Deadline,” Notice (April 4, 2020).
Department of Environmental Protection
50 Pa.B. 1960 “Availability of Food Recovery Infrastructure Grant; Application Deadline Extended,” Notice (April 4, 2020).
Susquehanna River Basin Commission
50 Pa.B. 1931 “Title 25—Environmental Protection: Review and Approval of Projects” Rules & Regulations (April 4, 2020).
S.B. 1101 “An Act amending Title 3 (Agriculture) of the Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes, providing for pandemic of 2020 guidelines for food establishments.” Referred to Agriculture and Rural Affairs [Senate] (April 3, 2020).
H.B. 2372 “An Act providing for insurance coverage for business interruption.” Referred to Insurance [House] (April 3, 2020).
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.” Removed from table [House] (April 6, 2020).
H.B. 881 “An Act amending the act of June 18, 1982 (P.L.549, No.159), entitled "An act providing for the administration of certain Commonwealth farmland within the Department of Agriculture," further providing for agricultural land conservation assistance grant program.” Re-committed to Appropriations [House] (April 6, 2020).
Federal Executive Agencies—Actions and Notices:
85 FR 18913 “Fiscal Year 2020 Tariff-Rate Quotas Increased for Raw Cane Sugar and Refined Sugar,” Notice (April 3, 2020).
85 FR 19132 “Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request [Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service: Interstate Movement of Certain Land Tortoises],” Notice (April 6, 2020).
85 FR 19422 “Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request [National Agricultural Statistics Service: Agricultural Resource Management and Chemical Use Surveys—Substantive Change],” Notice (April 7, 2020).
85 FR 19422 “Notice of Request for Approval of an Information Collection [Event Appearance Requests for the Secretary or members of his staff],” Notice—Comment Period (April 7, 2020).
Agricultural Marketing Service
85 FR 19378 “Subpart Nomenclature Change; Technical Amendment [Agricultural Marketing Act of 1946 and the Egg Products Inspection Act],” Rule (April 7, 2020).
Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service
85 FR 18471 “National List of Reportable Animal Diseases,” Proposed Rule—Comment Period (April 2, 2020).
85 FR 19132 “Notice of Request for Revision to and Extension of Approval of an Information Collection; Importation of Beef and Ovine Meat From Uruguay and Beef From Argentina and Brazil,” Notice—Comment Period (April 6, 2020).
Environmental Protection Agency
85 FR 18952 “Pesticide Product Registration; Receipt of Applications for New Uses,” Notice—Comment Period (April 3, 2020).
85 FR 19146 “Pesticide Reregistration Performance Measures and Goals; Annual Progress Report; Notice of Availability,” Notice—Comment Period (April 6, 2020).
Federal Emergency Management Agency
85 FR 18580 “Tennessee; Major Disaster and Related Determinations” Notice (April 2, 2020).
85 FR 18581 “Nebraska; Amendment No. 14 to Notice of a Major Disaster Declaration,” Notice (April 2, 2020).
85 FR 18582 “Mississippi; Major Disaster and Related Determinations,” Notice (April 2, 2020).
85 FR 18583 “Missouri; Amendment No. 3 to Notice of a Major Disaster Declaration,” Notice (April 2, 2020).
85 FR 18583 “Missouri; Amendment No. 6 to Notice of a Major Disaster Declaration,” Notice (April 2, 2020).
85 FR 18584 “Wisconsin; Amendment No. 2 to Notice of a Major Disaster Declaration,” Notice (April 2, 2020).
85 FR 18584 “West Virginia; Amendment No. 8 to Notice of a Major Disaster Declaration,” Notice (April 2, 2020).
85 FR 18585 “Wisconsin; Major Disaster and Related Determinations,” Notice (April 2, 2020).
85 FR 19009 “Proposed Flood Hazard Determinations [SC, TX, UT, VA],” Notice—Comment Period (April 3, 2020).
85 FR 19004 “Changes in Flood Hazard Determinations [CO, FL, MA, NC, OK, PA, RI, TN, TX, UT],” Notice (April 3, 2020).
85 FR 19011 “Changes in Flood Hazard Determinations [CO, CT, FL, NY, NC, OK, SC, TX, VA],” Notice (April 3, 2020).
85 FR 19007 “Final Flood Hazard Determinations [IL, PA],” Notice (April 3, 2020).
Fish and Wildlife Service
85 FR 18532 “Migratory Bird Hunting; Proposed Migratory Bird Hunting Regulations on Certain Federal Indian Reservations and Ceded Lands for the 2020-21 Season,” Proposed Rule—Comment Period (April 2, 2020).
85 FR 18455 “Migratory Bird Subsistence Harvest in Alaska; Region-Specific Regulations,” Rule—Comment Period (April 2, 2020).
Food and Drug Administration
85 FR 19114 “Laboratory Accreditation for Analyses of Foods; Extension of Comment Period,” Proposed Rule—Comment Period (April 6, 2020).
85 FR 19489 “Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposed Collection; Comment Request; Recordkeeping and Records Access Requirements for Food Facilities,” Notice—Comment Period (April 7, 2020).
Rural Utilities Service
85 FR 18549 “Announcement of Funding Availability, Loan Application Procedures, and Deadlines for the Rural Energy Savings Program,” Notice (April 2, 2020).
85 FR 18413 “Rural Energy Savings Program,” Rule—Comment (April 2, 2020).
Wage and Hour Division
85 FR 19326 “Paid Leave Under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act,” Rule (April 6, 2020).
U.S. House Agriculture Committee Actions:
H.R.6142 “Black Maternal Health Momnibus Act of 2020.” Referred to the Subcommittee for Indigenous Peoples of the United States [House] (Mar. 30, 2020).
H.R.6449 “To provide that during an emergency declared under the National Emergencies Act or the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act, supplemental nutrition assistance program benefits issued under the Food and Nutrition Act of 2008 may be used to purchase certain durable goods.” Referred to the House Committee on Agriculture (April 3, 2020).
H.R.6445 “To modify nutrition programs to address the Coronavirus Disease 2019, and for other purposes.” Referred to the Subcommittee on Economic Development, Public Buildings, and Emergency Management (April 6, 2020).
H.R.6459 “To provide funds to enable counties to make competitive grants to qualified local units of government to address major community development and public infrastructure challenges, and for other purposes.” Referred to the House Committee on Agriculture (April 7, 2020).
H.R.6461 “To prohibit senior Government officials, including Members of Congress, from purchasing or selling certain investments, and for other purposes.” Referred to the Committees on Financial Services, Agriculture, Oversight and Reform, House Administration, and the Judiciary (April 7, 2020).
U.S. Senate Agriculture, Nutrition, And Forestry Committee Actions:
No new actions April 2—8, 2020
Follow us on Twitter @AgShaleLaw to receive #AgLaw HotLinks
April 2—8, 2020 Top #AgLaw links:
Ag supply chain preps for COVID-19 uncertainty, Farm and Dairy
Study: ASF could carry $50b price tag for U.S., Feedstuffs
Dairy industry call on April 7 to Address COVID-19 Questions, Morning Ag Clips
Agriculture feels impact as pandemic reshapes U.S. diet, rattles producers, Successful Farming
DFA wins bid for majority of Dean Foods assets, Feedstuffs
COVID-19 not transmissible through food, Morning Ag Clips
Connect with us on Facebook. Every week we post the CASL Ledger detailing all of our publications and activities from the week.
Want to get updates, but prefer to listen?
Check out the Agricultural Law Podcast. Subscribe at iTunes, Spotify, or Stitcher.
Want a monthly recap of some of the biggest legal developments in agriculture?
Check out our February 2020 Agricultural Law Brief.
To receive this monthly update via email, subscribe here.