The bill creates the emergency invasive-pest response fund (fund), which is subject to annual appropriation. The commissioner of agriculture (commissioner) may expend money from the fund to implement the bill and emergency measures to control or eradicate invasive pests. The state agricultural commission (commission) may request that, at the end of each fiscal year, money in the plant health, pest control, and environmental protection cash fund be transferred to the fund. The commissioner is authorized to seek and expend gifts, grants, or donations from private or public sources for the new fund.
The commissioner may:
- Enter into an agreement with any person or local government to provide pest control services. The department of agriculture may provide pest control services directly or through a local government and may require remuneration for providing pest control services. The remuneration is deposited in the fund.
- Work cooperatively with the United States secretary of agriculture to implement a joint phytosanitary program if the program would economically or environmentally assist with mitigating or eradicating the spread of a regulated nonquarantine pest; and
- Quarantine anything that harbors a pest if the pest has an economically unacceptable impact and if the measures to control the pest may achieve an acceptable level of official control.
If the commissioner determines that a public nuisance creates an unacceptable risk of spreading a pest, the commissioner may coordinate with industry to, support local governments to, and make grants to take emergency action to quarantine, control, or eradicate an invasive pest.
The commission may establish procedures for determining what is a public nuisance. A board of county commissioners may declare a pest to be a public nuisance and require its control or eradication.
(Note: Italicized words indicate new material added to the original summary; dashes through words indicate deletions from the original summary.)
(Note: This summary applies to the reengrossed version of this bill as introduced in the second house.)