Bill Summary for S 582 (2023-2024)

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Summary date: 

May 31 2023

Bill Information:

View NCGA Bill Details2023-2024 Session
Senate Bill 582 (Public) Filed Tuesday, April 4, 2023
Intro. by Jackson, Sanderson, B. Newton.

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Bill summary

House committee substitute to the 4th edition makes the following changes.

Organizes the act's content into Parts. 

Further amends the definition of agriculture, agricultural, and farming in GS 106-581.1 to provide that when performed on the farm, those terms also include biofuel production for commercial sale.

Amends GS 20-158 to also make the listed defense to the violation of entering an intersection when the traffic light is red applicable to operators of farm equipment or machinery in addition to motorcycle operators. The elements of the defense include that the intersection is controlled by a vehicle actuated traffic signal using an inductive loop to activate the traffic signal.

Amends GS 19A-37 by exempting from Article 3, Animal Welfare Act, a boarding kennel as defined in GS 90-181.1 (was, a boarding kennel operating under the supervision of a licensed veterinarian). Amends the definition of boarding kennel in GS 90-181.1 so that it is now a facility operating under a veterinary facility permit (was, a facility or establishment under the supervision of a veterinarian) and which regularly offers to the public the service of boarding dogs or cats or both for a fee. Makes conforming changes to the provision requiring the adoption of rules. Amends GS 90-186 by specifying that the $75 boarding kennel permit fee is to be added to the veterinary facility permit fee. 

Deletes proposed changes to GS 14-399. Amends proposed GS 14-399.3, duty to stop in event of certain spills from vehicles, by excluding livestock or poultry excreta generated by live animals being transported on the vehicle, and feathers from live birds being transported on the vehicle. 

Amends GS 106-65.105D to increase from a Class 1 misdemeanor to a Class A1 misdemeanor the punishment for a person who willfully resists, opposes, impedes, intimidates, or interferes with any duly authorized agent while engaged in or on account of the performance of the duly authorized agent's official duties under Article 4H, Bedding, when a deadly weapon is used in the commission of the act. Also amends GS 106-549.34 by increasing the punishment from a Class 1 to Class A1 misdemeanor when a person willfully assaults, resists, opposes, impedes, intimidates, or interferes with any person while engaged in or on account of the performance of their official duties under Article 49C (Federal and State Cooperation as to Meat Inspection; Implementation of Inspection) or Article 48B (Meat Inspection Requirements; Adulteration and Misbranding) when a deadly weapon is used in the commission of the act. Applies to offenses committed on or after December 1, 2023.

Amends GS 106-22 to require the Commissioner of Agriculture, by and with the consent and advice of the Board of Agriculture, to (1) adopt rules and make policies related to markets operated by the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (DACS), and provides that specified rules remain in full force and effect unless repealed or amended by the Commissioner and (2) set reasonable fees for calibration services and adjustments performed by the Metrology Laboratory Section of the Standards Division.

Amends GS 136-129 by correcting a cross-reference. 

Enacts GS 103-17, which includes findings and designates the second Wednesday in November as North Carolina Farms Appreciation Day, beginning in 2024. Designates the North Carolina Grange the lead organization for the recognition of North Carolina Farmers Appreciation Day and requires the development of a plan, in consultation with specified entities, to raise awareness of and promote the first annual Appreciation Day. Requires the North Carolina Grange to report on the plan to the specified NCGA committee by June 30, 2024.

Amends proposed new GS 15A-300.4 (use of unmanned aircraft system near a forest fire prohibited) by amending the listed exceptions to only require a person operating an unmanned aircraft system to have the consent (was, written consent) of the official in charge of managing the forest fire.

Amends GS 106-899 to clarify that during a drought, the Commissioner of Agriculture or his or her designee may establish a fire patrol in any district. Requires in the case of fire in or threatening any forest or woodland, the forest ranger or deputy ranger must attend forthwith and use all necessary means to confine and extinguish the fire.

Deletes proposed changes to GS 87-98.4 which allowed an employee to drill an irrigation well on the property of the business without a well contractor certification. Amends GS 87-98.6 by exempting from the exam requirement a person who is 70 or older who (1) has engaged in well contactor activity for more than 20 years, (2) has no record of having committed any violations of the relevant rules and laws in the previous 10 years, and (3) meets all other requirements for certification. 

Amends GS 90A-47.4 by increasing the fee for certification as an animal waste management system operator from $25 to $85. Increases the certificate renewal fee from $10 to $25. No longer requires a certificate holder who fails to pay the renewal fee within 30 days of expiration to pass the certification exam and instead requires paying the renewal fee and a late fee equal to twice the annual renewal fee. Effective July 1, 2023.

Amends the definition of farm digester system in GS 143-213 so that it includes all animal waste management (was, manure management) equipment. Requires the gases collected by the system to be used as a renewable energy resource as quickly as feasible, but within six months of the collection of the gases, and during that period the gas must be flared instead of vented.

Requires the Environmental Management Commission and DEQ to modify the Aquaculture Permit (the specified NPDS permit for discharges from seafood packing and rinsing, aquatic animal operations, and similarly designated wastewater that took effect on December 1, 2021) to be substantively identical to the Prior Aquaculture Permit (the specified NPDS permit for those same discharges that expired on March 30, 2021). Requires the Aquaculture Permit to be reopened and modified as described above no later than 180 days after the effective date of this act. 

Amends GS 130A-343 to no longer prohibit the Commission for Public Health from including more restrictive conditions and limitations established in the approval of a wastewater system as Accepted that are not included in the approval of the wastewater system as Innovative or as otherwise approved by rule.