BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    



          SENATE COMMITTEE ON AGRICULTURE
                          Senator Cathleen Galgiani, Chair
                                2015 - 2016  Regular 

          Bill No:           SB 1270         Hearing Date:  4/19/16
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          |Author:    |Galgiani                                             |
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          |Version:   |2/18/16   Introduced                                 |
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          |Urgency:   |No                    |Fiscal:    |Yes              |
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          |Consultant:|Anne Megaro                                          |
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              Subject:  Diseased animals and poultry:  regulation:  fee  
                                      schedule


           SUMMARY  :
          This bill would authorize the California Department of Food and  
          Agriculture (CDFA) to establish a fee schedule to recover the  
          reasonable costs associated with animal health services that do  
          not provide a benefit beyond the payer.  


           BACKGROUND AND EXISTING  
          LAW  :
          The Animal Health Branch (AHB) of CDFA focuses on protecting  
          livestock populations from devastating diseases that cannot be  
          contained on the individual level and which require statewide  
          coordination.  The AHB investigates known or suspected cases of  
          specified diseases, conducts animal disease surveillance and  
          traceability programs, and prepares and executes emergency  
          response planning.  Examples of disease surveillance programs  
          include tuberculosis, brucellosis, bovine spongiform  
          encephalopathy (BSE or mad cow disease), and avian diseases.   
          According to CDFA, the AHB also permits and monitors over 2  
          million animals entering California every year.

          Existing law:

             1)   Requires CDFA to investigate any contagious, infectious,  
               or transmissible disease affecting domestic animals in  
               California.








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             2)   Requires the state veterinarian to make regulations to  
               prevent bovine tuberculosis from entering and spreading  
               within California.

             3)   Authorizes CDFA to adopt regulations to control or  
               eradicate cattle diseases by requiring permits, limiting  
               intra or interstate movement of cattle, utilizing  
               diagnostic tests and vaccines, and mandating reporting of  
               suspected or confirmed diseases.

             4)   Requires CDFA to periodically publish a list of  
               reportable conditions that pose a threat to public health,  
               animal health, the environment, or the food supply.

             5)   Authorizes CDFA to establish a fee schedule to cover  
               reasonable costs associated with animal health services  
               that provide a specific benefit or service directly to the  
               payer and the benefit or service is not provided to those  
               not charged.

             6)   Limits fees to a maximum $500 per license, permit,  
               registration, product, or service.  


           PROPOSED  
          LAW  :

          This bill:

          Extends the sunset date from January 1, 2017 to January 1, 2022,  
          for CDFA to establish a fee schedule to recover the reasonable  
          costs associated with animal health services that do not provide  
          a benefit to others beyond the payer.


           ARGUMENTS IN SUPPORT:
           
          According to the author, "SB 1270 would allow CDFA the  
          flexibility to charge a fee-for-service to recover the  
          reasonable costs associated with animal health services that do  
          not provide a "public good."  By doing so, this bill would  
          improve CDFA's fiscal responsibility and use of General Funds  
          and department staff.  For example, in some remote areas there  
          are no private veterinarians certified by CDFA to do specific  
          regulated work, such as test cattle for tuberculosis or  








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          administer a vaccine for brucellosis.  In these rare instances,  
          the only veterinary service available in the area is a CDFA  
          field veterinarian.  These cattle are not suspected of  
          contracting these diseases and these services are not related to  
          an outbreak or emergency response.  Therefore, CDFA is justified  
          to seek reimbursement to cover the costs of these services that  
          serve a marketing purpose and not a general public health  
          benefit.  Currently, there is no fee schedule established to  
          determine cost-recovery of these services, and SB 1270 would  
          allow CDFA to establish this fee schedule until January 1,  
          2022."




           COMMENTS  :
           
           2011 Budget.  CDFA's General Fund allocation was cut by roughly  
          $30 million, or one-third, during the 2011-2012 state budget  
          reductions.  The secretary was directed to convene meetings with  
          agricultural stakeholders to find solutions to limit the need  
          for state resources and improve fiscal responsibility.  

          Budget trailer bill.  AB 120 of 2011 authorized CDFA to seek  
          reimbursement for services where the service only benefits the  
          payee and not the public in general.  For example, in some  
          instances a private-practice veterinarian would provide the  
          service for a fee; however, only a CDFA staff veterinarian is  
          available.  In other instances, the service is required for  
          personal or business matters and is not related to a suspected  
          animal health disease outbreak.  In these instances, CDFA would  
          like to recover the costs for these services.

          Sunset.  CDFA was granted the authority to establish the fee  
          schedule in 2012.  The final schedule is anticipated to be  
          released later this year. 


           RELATED  
          LEGISLATION  :

          AB 120 (Budget) Chapter 133, Statutes of 2011.  Among other  
          provisions, authorizes CDFA, until January 1, 2017, to establish  
          a fee schedule to recover the reasonable costs associated with  
          animal health services that do not provide a benefit beyond the  








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          payer.  The fee may not exceed $500 for each license, permit,  
          registration, product, or service.  
                    
               
           SUPPORT  :
          
          Association of California Egg Farmers (Co-sponsor)
          California Grain and Feed Association (Co-sponsor)


           OPPOSITION  :
          
          None received

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