AN ACT TO ENACT THE NORTH CAROLINA FARM ACT OF 2013 TO (1) LIMIT THE LIABILITY OF NORTH CAROLINA COMMODITY PRODUCERS ARISING FROM FOOD SAFETY ISSUES RELATED TO THEIR PRODUCTS; (2) LIMIT THE LIABILITY OF FARM ANIMAL ACTIVITY SPONSORS, FARM ANIMAL PROFESSIONALS, AND AGRITOURISM OPERATORS AND CLARIFY THAT EQUINE RECREATION WHERE THE LANDOWNER RECEIVES NO COMPENSATION IS SUBJECT TO THE RECREATIONAL USE STATUTE AND NOT THE EQUINE ACTIVITY LIABILITY STATUTE; (3) ALLOW THE COMMISSIONER OF AGRICULTURE TO ASSESS NONMONETARY PENALTIES TO ADDRESS VIOLATIONS WHEN APPROPRIATE; (4) DECREASE THE FREQUENCY OF THE AGRICULTURAL WATER USE SURVEY; (5) LIMIT THE PERSONALLY IDENTIFYING INFORMATION THAT THE DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE AND CONSUMER SERVICES MAY DISCLOSE ABOUT ITS ANIMAL HEALTH PROGRAMS; (6) MAKE CONFORMING CHANGES TO THE NAME OF THE STRUCTURAL PEST CONTROL AND PESTICIDES DIVISION AND CLARIFY THE RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE DIVISION; (7) AMEND CERTAIN EGG LABELING REQUIREMENTS; (8) REPEAL THE INTERSTATE PEST CONTROL COMPACT; (9) REPEAL CERTAIN CLEANLINESS STANDARDS FOR CREAMERIES AND DAIRY FACILITIES THAT ARE ADDRESSED BY THE NC FOOD, DRUG, AND COSMETIC ACT; (10) CHANGE SETBACK DISTANCES AND BURN TIMES FOR FLAMMABLE MATERIALS RESULTING FROM GROUND CLEARING ACTIVITIES; (11) REPEAL THE STATE SULFUR CONTENT STANDARDS FOR GASOLINE; (12) EXEMPT FORESTRY AND SILVICULTURE OPERATIONS FROM TEMPORARY DRIVEWAY PERMITTING; (13) ALLOW A FARM BUILDING THAT IS USED FOR PUBLIC OR PRIVATE EVENTS TO MAINTAIN ITS FARM BUILDING STATUS FOR PURPOSES OF THE STATE BUILDING CODE; (14) EXEMPT CERTAIN STRUCTURES FROM THE SPRINKLER SYSTEM REQUIREMENTS OF THE NORTH CAROLINA BUILDING CODE; (15) ALLOW RETAILERS TO DISPLAY MORE THAN FOUR HUNDRED SQUARE FEET OF NURSERY STOCK FOR SALE IN THEIR PARKING LOTS; (16) EXPAND THE AGRICULTURAL DAM EXEMPTION TO THE DAM SAFETY ACT; (17) ALLOW A LANDOWNER TO WITHDRAW WATER FOR AGRICULTURAL USE DURING WATER SHORTAGE EMERGENCIES UNDER CERTAIN CONDITIONS; (18) DIRECT THE DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENT AND NATURAL RESOURCES AND THE DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION TO JOINTLY PETITION THE WILMINGTON DISTRICT OF THE UNITED STATES ARMY CORPS OF ENGINEERS TO ALLOW FOR GREATER FLEXIBILITY AND OPPORTUNITY TO PERFORM STREAM AND WETLANDS MITIGATION BEYOND THE IMMEDIATE WATERSHED WHERE DEVELOPMENT WILL OCCUR; AND (19) ACCELERATE THE SUNSET DATE OF THE PETROLEUM DISPLACEMENT PLAN AS A RESULT OF THE STATE HAVING SUBSTANTIALLY ACHIEVED ITS TWENTY PERCENT REDUCTION GOAL OF THE USE OF PETROLEUM PRODUCTS.
House amendments make the following changes to the 4th edition.
Amendment #1 amends GS 99B-12 to modify the criteria that must be met in order for commodity producers to be entitled to a rebuttable presumption that they were not negligent when consumption of the producer's raw agricultural commodity is the proximate cause of death or injury to require that the producer has had no settlement agreements concluding litigation where the settlement exceeds $25,000 or in which the producer admitted liability (was, no settlements of complaints against the producer) during the previous three years based on a claim that the producer's negligence was the proximate cause of a plaintiff's death or injury.
Amendment #2 amends GS 99E-2 and GS 99E-6 to require in any action for damages against an equine activity sponsor or an equine professional or a farm animal activity sponsor or farm animal professional for an equine or farm animal activity that the sponsor or professional plead the affirmative defense of assumption of the risk by the participant.
Amendment #3 amends GS 99E-5 to clarify that the inherent risks of farm animal activities include the risk of contracting an illness due to coming into physical contact (was, coming into contact) with animals or their feed or waste.
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