2018 Legislative Session Agriculture Issues Highlighted

The second week of the 2018 Regular Legislative Session wrapped up last Friday, January 19th. 

The full text of each bill and any amendments can be found on the legislative web sites. (www.flsenate.gov; www.myfloridahouse.com; and www.leg.state.fl.us.) Updates from the previous report appear in bold text. 

Agricultural Operations

Nonnative Animals: HB 145 by Representative Beshears requires the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) to establish a pilot program to mitigate the impacts of priority invasive species by authorizing FWC to enter into competitively bid contracts with individuals and entities to capture and destroy the priority invasive species found on public lands and public waters. The bill has passed its first of three committees. The Senate companion, SB 168 by Senator Steube has passed its first of three committees. 

Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (DACS): CS/HB 553 by Representative Raburn is the annual DACS package, which contains various changes within the Department’s jurisdiction. The bill’s highlights include the removal of a requirement that payment for pesticide registration fees be submitted electronically and a specified methodology for the value assessment of screen enclosed structures used in citrus production for pest exclusion. The bill has passed one of three committees. The Senate companion, CS/SB 740 by Senator Stargel is in the same posture. 

Young Farmers and Ranchers: HB 645 by Representative Raburn creates the Florida Young Farmer and Rancher Matching Grant Program within the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services and the Florida Young Farmer and Rancher Advisory Council within the department; requiring the department to establish a clearinghouse on its website for resources to assist young and beginning farmers and ranchers. It has three committee references. The Senate companion, SB 872 by Senator Grimsley, has passed its first of three committees. 

To read our full weekly reports, please go to https://www.deanmead.com/2018-florida-legislative-session/

 

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