Chief Sponsor: Derrin R. Owens

Senate Sponsor: Ralph Okerlund


8     General Description:
9          This bill addresses plant pest emergency control.
10     Highlighted Provisions:
11          This bill:
12          ▸     expands the scope of the insect infestation emergency control chapter;
13          ▸     modifies definitions;
14          ▸     addresses decision and action committees;
15          ▸     addresses commissioner's authority to address plant pest emergencies;
16          ▸     creates the Plant Pest Fund;
17          ▸     amends provisions related to recovery of costs from an owner or occupant; and
18          ▸     makes technical and conforming amendments.
19     Money Appropriated in this Bill:
20          None
21     Other Special Clauses:
22          None
23     Utah Code Sections Affected:
24     AMENDS:
25          4-1-110, as renumbered and amended by Laws of Utah 2017, Chapter 345
26          4-35-101, as renumbered and amended by Laws of Utah 2017, Chapter 345
27          4-35-102, as renumbered and amended by Laws of Utah 2017, Chapter 345

28          4-35-103, as renumbered and amended by Laws of Utah 2017, Chapter 345
29          4-35-104, as renumbered and amended by Laws of Utah 2017, Chapter 345
30          4-35-105, as renumbered and amended by Laws of Utah 2017, Chapter 345
31          4-35-106, as renumbered and amended by Laws of Utah 2017, Chapter 345
32          4-35-107, as last amended by Laws of Utah 2019, Chapter 349

34     Be it enacted by the Legislature of the state of Utah:
35          Section 1. Section 4-1-110 is amended to read:
36          4-1-110. Growing or storing food for personal or family use.
37          (1) As used in this section, "family food" means food owned by an individual that is
38     intended for the individual's consumption, or for consumption by members of the individual's
39     immediate family, that:
40          (a) is legal for human consumption;
41          (b) is lawfully possessed; and
42          (c) poses no risk:
43          (i) to health;
44          (ii) of spreading [insect] plant pest infestation; or
45          (iii) of spreading agricultural disease.
46          (2) Family food that is grown by an individual on the individual's property is not
47     subject to local or federal regulation if growth of the family food:
48          (a) does not negatively impact the rights of adjoining property owners; and
49          (b) complies with the food safety requirements of this title.
50          (3) A government entity may not confiscate family food described in Subsection (2) or
51     family food that is stored by the owner in the owner's home or dwelling.
52          (4) (a) If any provision of this section or the application of any provision of this section
53     to any person or circumstance is held invalid by a final decision of a court of competent
54     jurisdiction, the remainder of this section shall be given effect without the invalid provision or
55     application.
56          (b) The provisions of this section are severable.
57          Section 2. Section 4-35-101 is amended to read:

59          4-35-101. Title.
60          This chapter is known as the "[Insect Infestation] Plant Pest Emergency Control Act."
61          Section 3. Section 4-35-102 is amended to read:
62          4-35-102. Definitions.
63          As used in this chapter:
64          (1) "Committee" means the Decision and Action Committee created by [and
65     established under] this chapter.
66          (2) "Department" means the Department of Agriculture and Food.
67          (3) "Fund" means the Plant Pest Fund created by Section 4-35-106.
68          [(3)] (4) ["Insect] "Plant pest" means [any animal in the class insect] a biological agent
69     that the commissioner determines to be a threat to agriculture in the state as described in
70     Subsection 4-2-103(1)(k)(i).
71          Section 4. Section 4-35-103 is amended to read:
72          4-35-103. Decision and Action Committee created -- Members -- How appointed
73     -- Duties of committee -- Per diem and expenses allowed.
74          (1) (a) There is created the Decision and Action Committee that consists of not fewer
75     than six members.
76          (b) One member is the commissioner and one member is appointed to represent the
77     department.
78          (c) The remaining members of the committee are appointed by the commissioner [on
79     an ad hoc basis] as necessary from persons directly affected by and involved in the current
80     [insect infestation] plant pest emergency.
81          (d) The commissioner, or the commissioner's designee, shall cast the deciding vote in
82     the event of a tie.
83          (e) The committee is dissolved when the commissioner declares that the [insect
84     infestation] plant pest emergency is over.
85          (f) Attendance of a majority of committee members at a meeting called of the
86     committee constitutes a quorum for the transaction of business.
87          (g) The committee is governed by Title 52, Chapter 4, Open and Public Meetings Act,
88     and Title 63G, Chapter 2, Government Records Access and Management Act.
89          (2) The committee shall[: (a)] establish a system of priorities for [any insect

90     infestation] a plant pest emergency[; and].
91          [(b) certify to the commissioner any area which requires the establishment of an insect
92     control district in areas of infestation and in which a simple majority of the landowners and
93     lessees whose total production exceeds 50% of the production in that area has agreed to pay
94     proportionate shares of the costs of controlling the insects infesting the area.]
95          (3) A member may not receive compensation or benefits for the member's service, but
96     may receive per diem and travel expenses in accordance with:
97          (a) Section 63A-3-106;
98          (b) Section 63A-3-107; and
99          (c) rules made by the Division of Finance pursuant to Sections 63A-3-106 and
100     63A-3-107.
101          Section 5. Section 4-35-104 is amended to read:
102          4-35-104. Commissioner to declare emergency -- Powers of commissioner in
103     emergency.
104          (1) (a) The commissioner, with the consent of the governor, may declare that [an insect
105     infestation] a plant pest emergency situation exists [which] that jeopardizes property and
106     resources, and designate the area or areas affected.
107          (b) [The] An area referred to in Subsection (1)(a) may include federal lands, after
108     notification of the appropriate federal land manager.
109          (2) The commissioner is authorized, subject to [the requirements of] Section 4-35-105,
110     to direct all emergency measures the [commission] commissioner considers necessary to
111     alleviate the emergency condition.
112          (3) The commissioner shall:
113          (a) [utilize] use equipment, supplies, facilities, personnel, and other available
114     resources;
115          (b) enter into contracts for the acquisition, rental, or hire of equipment, services,
116     materials, and supplies;
117          (c) accept assistance, services, and facilities offered by federal and local governmental
118     units or private agencies; and
119          (d) accept on behalf of the state the provisions and benefits of acts of Congress
120     designated to provide assistance.

121          Section 6. Section 4-35-105 is amended to read:
122          4-35-105. Commissioner to act upon declaration of a plant pest emergency.
123          (1) The commissioner initiates operations to control [the insect infestation] a plant pest
124     in the designated area or [areas: (a)] upon declaration of an infestation emergency[, as
125     described in Section 4-35-104; and].
126          [(b) upon deposit of the owner's and lessee's projected proportionate share of the costs.]
127          (2) The commissioner and the members of the committee may suspend or terminate
128     control operations upon a determination that the operations will not significantly reduce the
129     [insect] plant pest population in the designated emergency area.
130          Section 7. Section 4-35-106 is amended to read:
131          4-35-106. Plant Pest Fund.
132          [(1) All money received by the state under this chapter is deposited by the Department
133     of Agriculture and Food as dedicated credits for the purpose of insect control with the state.]
134          [(2) The dedicated credits may be used as matching funds for:]
135          (1) There is created an expendable special revenue fund known as the "Plant Pest
136     Fund."
137          (2) The fund is funded from:
138          (a) money the plant industry division within the department receives under this title;
139          (b) the landowner's and lessee's share of costs, if required by rule made by the
140     department in accordance with Title 63G, Chapter 3, Utah Administrative Rulemaking Act;
141          (c) appropriations from the Legislature;
142          (d) federal money deposited into the fund; and
143          (e) the interest and earnings on the fund.
144          (3) The department may only use money in the fund to fund survey, detection,
145     eradication, or suppression efforts for plant pests with the exception designated in Subsection
146     (4).
147          (4) The department may annually use an amount not to exceed the lesser of the
148     following to carry out the department's duties under this chapter:
149          (a) 10% of the fund annually; or
150          (b) $300,000.
151          (5) (a) The fund may not exceed $10,000,000 of money deposited under Subsections

152     (2)(a), (c), and (e).
153          (b) The Division of Finance shall transfer the money described in Subsection (5)(a) in
154     excess of $10,000,000 at the end of a fiscal year into the General Fund.
155          (6) Federal money deposited into the fund shall be accounted for separately.
156          [(a)] (7) Fund money may be used as matching funds for participation in programs of
157     the United States Department of Agriculture[; and] for survey, detection, eradication, or
158     suppression efforts of plant pests.
159          [(b) in contracts with private property owners who own croplands contiguous to
160     infested public rangelands.]
161          Section 8. Section 4-35-107 is amended to read:
162          4-35-107. Notice to owner or occupant -- Corrective action required -- Directive
163     issued by department -- Costs -- Owner or occupant may prohibit treatment.
164          (1) The department or an authorized agent of the department shall notify the owner or
165     occupant of the problem and the available alternatives to remedy the problem. The owner or
166     occupant shall take corrective action within 30 days.
167          (2) (a) If the owner or occupant fails to take corrective action under Subsection (1), the
168     department may issue a directive for corrective action [which] that shall be taken within 15
169     days.
170          (b) If the owner or occupant fails to act within the required time, the department shall
171     take the necessary action.
172          (c) The department may recover full or partial costs incurred for controlling [an insect
173     infestation] a plant pest emergency from the owner or occupant of the property on whose
174     property corrective action was taken. The amount of costs to be recovered is at the
175     department's sole discretion.
176          (3) (a) [Owners or occupants] An owner or occupant of property may prohibit
177     treatment by presenting an affidavit from the owner's or occupant's attending physician or
178     physician assistant to the department [which] that states that the treatment as planned is a
179     danger to the owner's or occupant's health.
180          (b) The department shall provide the owner or occupant with alternatives to treatment
181     [which] that will abate the [infestation] plant pest.