SB 5959 to Fund Brand Department Signed by Governor
SB 5959 to Fund Brand Department Signed By Governor
Senate Bill 5959, saving the brand program from potential shut down, approved with strong bipartisan support, was signed by the Governor on April 19th.
WCFA leaders and staff participated in meetings on the issue and testified in Olympia several times to support the process. Seeing a solution to the brand department budget crisis was a top legislative priority for the 2019 session that was accomplished with the passage and signing of this bill.
“This is an invaluable program to the protection of the livestock industry in our state,” said bill sponsor Senator Judy Warnick, R-Moses Lake. “The needs were outpacing the capacity and the program was facing some serious financial challenges, but this stakeholder-led proposal will help the program’s long-term viability. The bill will modernize our system and create more accountability.”
The legislation includes provisions to increase membership of the Livestock Identification Advisory Committee from six to 12 members through July 1, 2023. It will also expand the use of the electronic cattle transaction reporting system to all cattle and allows additional reporting of livestock moving out of the state.
In an effort to professionalize the program, Warnick’s bill creates a certification requirement for individuals who are interested in performing livestock inspections run by the state Department of Agriculture. Livestock inspectors would be trained in the reading of printed brands, microchip and other electronic identification tools, and processing official documentation.
Posted: April 30, 2019
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