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Notice of Rule Proposals

Disclaimer:
 Notices of Proposal are posted on this site by the New Jersey Department of Agriculture to comply with N.J.S.A. 52:14B-4 to inform the public about pending rules. This version is not the official text of the proposal and may differ from the official text. The official text of the proposal is published in the New Jersey Register issue for the date indicated. Click on the rule title for additional information.

Avian Influenza
Administration
Jersey Grown Annuals and Bedding Plants
State Soil Conservation Committee
Diseases of Bees
Wine Promotion Accounts Grant Program
Dairy Industry Stores
Humane Treatment of Domestic Livestock
Quarantines
Quarantines and Embargoes on Animals
Sale and Distribution of Plants and Plant Material
Dairy Industry General Provisions
Processors, Dealers and Subdealers
Agricultural Liming Materials
Diseases of Bees
Jersey Grown Firewood and Sunflower Seeds
Equine Advisory Board
Livestock and Poultry Importation
Disease Control Programs
Aquaculture Development
Organic Certification Program
Expansion of Jersey Fresh and Jersey Grown Programs
Laboratory Services - Fees
Criteria and Standards for Animal Waste Management
Agricultural Development in the Highlands

Avian Influenza

Proposed Readoption with Amendments: N.J.A.C. 2:9
Proposal Date: January 21, 2014
Comment Period Closes: March 22, 2014 

The New Jersey Department of Agriculture (NJDA) actively monitors the bird markets and their poultry suppliers for evidence of avian influenza.  This rule will address payment of indemnities and disposal costs and limit stakeholder entitlement to indemnity and disposal costs. Proposed amendments to the rule acknowledge that indemnity payments and disposal cost reimbursement are subject to the availability of funds. Proposed amendments specify that appraisal values for depopulated poultry are determined by the USDA-approved appraisal value source. The rule provides the definitions to be used in Chapter 9 and establishes a registration system for live bird markets, poultry distributors, and production/supplier flocks.  Proposed amendments to Definitions specify that  the “Certificate of Veterinary Inspection” requires a copy of the final  lab report; clarify the requirement of sequestration of “established flock” poultry; add  day-old chicks exception permitted to be added to “monitored flocks;” require specimens positive for avian influenza (positive sample) to be confirmed  by National Veterinary Services Laboratory (NVSL), as clarified by USDA; require the copy of the final negative lab report in the “poultry inspection certificate;” specify the “poultry invoice” may originate from a production/supplier flock, and, in this case, must show poultry origination and required distributors or markets; and specify the number of birds requiring tests if a flock contains less than 30 birds in “tested flocks.”  The rule further provides registration requirements for live bird markets, poultry distributors, and production/supplier flocks operating in New Jersey, including permitted access of NJDA-authorized agents to their premises for inspection and testing.  Proposed amendments to the rule clarify that registrants show compliance through no pending violations or unsatisfied penalties; and  address  changes to the Federal program, specifying when NJDA registration exemption is permitted.  The rule also describes the sanitation, biosecurity, and surveillance measures required for live bird markets, poultry distributors, and production/supplier flocks, respectively and also set forth the quarantine procedures if avian influenza is found in a live bird market, poultry distributor, and/or production/supplier flock. Finally, the rule describes the requirements for sale and movement of poultry into live bird markets, and movement of poultry into qualified poultry auctions. Recordkeeping responsibilities are also imposed. The rule requires poultry invoices to accompany all poultry entering live bird markets. Live bird markets are also required to undergo quarterly testing, closure, and inspection. Proposed amendments to the rule clarify limits on movement of poultry to live bird markets that comply with N.J.A.C. 2:9-2.2 and provide rules for depopulation in the case of quarantine.  The rule requires that poultry distributors obtain  poultry inspection certificates for all poultry moved into a live bird market or poultry distributor; adhere to biosecurity protocol; undergo inspection and testing and  maintain a logbook certifying their compliance with approved biosecurity measures. Amendments to the rule specify that poultry distributors may only conduct business with markets, distributors, and flocks who are in compliance with N.J.A.C. 2:9-2.2; to N.J.A.C. 2:9-4.1(b) specify documentation requirements for generating poultry invoices and retaining inspection certificates or  certificate of veterinary inspection for poultry traceability in the event of a disease outbreak; and to N.J.A.C. 2:9-4.1(c) to provide the source to obtain the USDA documentation specifying official laboratory tests of the avian influenza program.  Amendment to the rule clarifies that the rule incorporates the requirement for poultry distributors maintaining records of all poultry transfers. The rule prohibits unregistered production/supplier flocks from selling poultry directly to live bird markets, authorizes random testing and inspection of production/supplier flocks, and requires maintenance of records of bird transfers, flock test records, and biosecurity records. Proposed amendments clarify that production/supplier flocks only conduct business with production/supplier flocks and poultry distributors in compliance with N.J.A.C. 2:9-2.2 and clarify that completed poultry invoice and poultry inspection certificate (or certificate of veterinary inspection) must accompany poultry intended for movement through a poultry distributor or to a production/supplier flock. The amendment to the rule clarifies that flock test records also must include poultry inspection certificates and certificates of veterinary inspection and poultry invoices, as well as other business records.  The rule addresses penalties to be imposed for violations of this chapter and the opportunity for a hearing. Subchapter 6 also provides for quarantine of any poultry found in violation of Chapter 9.

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Administration

Proposed Rule Readoptions with Amendments: N.J.A.C. 2:1-1, 2, 3
Proposal Date: October 21, 2013
Comment Period Closes: December 20, 2013

These rules outline the administration of the duties of the Department of Agriculture, generally track the administrative practices requirements, and explain each division responsibilities. The proposed amendments are to update the consolidation of certain functions in the Office of the Secretary, add the description of the existing Organic program in the Division of Markets, and provide email addresses to contact the Department and comment on proposed rules.  Subchapter 1 contains the rules governing the designation of additional organizations to the annual State Agricultural Convention and the procedures for an organization seeking to send delegates to the convention. A proposed amendment to N.J.A.C. 2:1-1.3(a) adds the Department website address to obtain forms.  Subchapter 2 delineates the responsibilities of the Department, lists and prescribes the functions of its departmental units, and sets forth the Department's table of organization. Amendments are proposed to reflect reorganization to incorporate operations into the Office of the Secretary; and to add the organic program, which did not become effective until after the existing rules were adopted.  Subchapter 3 describes the purpose and development of rules by the Department and sets forth the procedures to petition the Department for a new rule or rule amendment. The language is consistent with the Administrative Procedure Act, N.J.S.A. 52:14B-1 et seq. In addition, Subchapter 3 sets forth the procedures for submitting public comments to the Department concerning rule proposals, requests for extensions to the public comment period, and the standards applicable to public hearings.  N.J.A.C. 2:1-3.2(c) includes other methods, in addition to advisory groups, that may be used to facilitate public participation in rule development activities.    Amendments to N.J.A.C. 2:1-3.4 are proposed to provide the Department s website address for proposed rules and to include the email address for public comment on each specific proposal.  The addition of the website and email address is also proposed at N.J.A.C. 2:1-3.8 and 3.11.  N.J.A.C. 2:1-3.6 delineates the criteria for when the public comment period may be extended.  N.J.A.C. 2:1-3.7 provides the criteria for when a public hearing is conducted. Finally, N.J.A.C. 2:1-3.14 delineates the procedure for accessing public records and amendments to the fees associated therewith are proposed to reflect the amendment to N.J.S.A. 47:1A-5, reducing the fees to be more nearly equivalent to actual costs.

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Jersey Grown Annuals and Bedding Plants

Proposed New Rule and Amendments: N.J.A.C. 2:71
Proposal Date:  November 5, 2012
Comment Period Closes:  January 4, 2013

The New Jersey Department of Agriculture is proposing amendments and a new rule to permit New Jersey producers of ornamental annuals and bedding plants to use the "Jersey Grown" logo in marketing their products and to set forth the conditions and standards for annuals and bedding plants eligible for sale under the Jersey Grown logo.  The proposed amendments permit certified producers of ornamental annual plant material to make application for the use of the “Jersey Grown” logo; and define “ornamental annual plant material.”  In addition, proposed amendments approve the use of  the “Jersey Grown” logo in conjunction with the New Jersey map symbol as an official emblem for New Jersey produced ornamental annual plant material, set forth licensing and compliance requirements, the time frame in which commodities must be grown in New Jersey, and penalties to be assessed for non-compliance.  Amendments also are being proposed to incorporate changes in the law.   Proposed amendments change the penalty amounts in Grades and Standards.  These amendments cover Agricultural Commodities; “Jersey Bred”; “Jersey Grown”; “Jersey Organic”; and “Jersey Seafood” to reflect these new statutory requirements.  The penalty for violation of N.J.S.A. 4:10-5 was increased from $50 to $100.  The penalty for violation of Title 4, Chapter 10 or its regulations was increased from $50 to $100 for the first offense and from $100 to $200 for any subsequent offenses.   Violation of N.J.S.A. 4:10-5 is governed by the separate provision noted above. When an offense involves false, misleading, or improper labeling of farm products each package is a separate offense.  A package is a unit of sale.

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State Soil Conservation Committee

Proposed Rule Readoption: N.J.A.C. 2:90 
Comment Period Closes: October 5, 2012

The rules proposed for adoption, require that approval of applications for development where more than 5,000 square feet of land surface area is disturbed, must be conditioned upon certification of a plan for soil erosion and sediment control by the local soil conservation district wherein the soil disturbance occurs. The proposed rules set forth technical and administrative standards of the State Soil Conservation Committee (SSCC). This adoption action will enable persons proposing to engage in development activities to meet mandates and obtain erosion control plan approval upon which municipal land development approvals are conditioned. 
Subchapter One, Soil Erosion and Sediment Control on Land Disturbance Activities. This subchapter provides definitions, standards for soil erosion and sediment control, addresses the application process and provides specific guidance, including for single-family dwelling units. It also includes fees, enforcement reports of compliance and the appeal process. 

Click here to go to the revised Standards.

Click here to download a copy of the NJ Register proposal.

Click here to download a copy of the amended NJ Register Notice.

Subsequent to the initial notice of rule proposal, the Department identified certain errors and/or omissions in its proposal and has issued a revised notice to correct these errors.  As a result, the deadline for submitting comments on its rules has been extended to October 5, 2012.

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Diseases of Bees

Proposed Rule Amendment: N.J.A.C. 2:24 
Proposal Date: May 21, 2012
Comment Period Closes: July 20, 2012

Following the collapse of numerous honey bee colonies across the country, the New Jersey Legislature passed legislation directed to hive and colony protection and mandating changes through an act concerning the preservation of honey bee colonies.  A new Subchapter was developed with the assistance of the New Jersey Beekeeping Advisory Group. This Group is composed of representatives of the New Jersey Beekeepers Association, New Jersey Commercial Beekeepers, New Jersey Blueberry Advisory Council, American Cranberry Growers Association, New Jersey Farm Bureau, New Jersey State Board of Agriculture, New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station and Plant Industry Apiary Inspection Program personnel.  The proposals developed by the Group were shared with the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) Bureau of Pesticides and the New Jersey Pest Control Operators.  The NJDEP Bureau of Pesticides recommended that institutional structures be included with residential and commercial structural categories and that these include schools and municipal buildings.  Additional comments submitted by the Bureau to the Group led to the proposed addition of further definitions consistent with definitions in Bureau rules for pesticide applicators and operators to cover pesticide applications made by either licensed or unlicensed applicators.  The Department of Agriculture proposes to amend the current rule to add the new section, update the rules and to revise elements to reflect changes in pest population. These amendments update scientific references and accommodate current practices that have been shown to address the inspection and treatment needs. 

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Wine Promotion Accounts Grant Program

Proposed New Rules: N.J.A.C. 2:35A 
Proposal Date: June 6, 2011
Comment Period Closes: August 5, 2011

These proposed rules set forth the procedures to be followed by applicant entities in applying for grant funds from this account. The proposed rules provide that awards can only be used by entities for research and development concerning the viticultural and wine-making processes in the State and for the promotion of New Jersey wine, consistent with the recommendations of the New Jersey Wine Industry Advisory Council and the approval of the State Board of Agriculture.

There has been notice of wine project grants for some time on the Department’s website and through public and individual notices to advise of the application process and the selection criteria and to invite applications for grants for projects for research and development concerning the viticultural and wine-making processes in the State and for the promotion of New Jersey wine. The increasing interest in the New Jersey wine industry necessitates greater formality in application procedures.  The proposed rules provide definitions, and a description of how the program will be administered. They identify allowable uses and limitations placed on grant funds notification processes and reporting requirements.  The proposed rules include detailed information concerning the application process and criteria considered for grant awards.  The requirements incorporated in these rules do not replace the requirements of Circular Letter 07-05-OMB, as amended and supplemented, which is incorporated into the rules at N.J.A.C. 2:35A.  The Department will continue to adhere to Circular Letter 07-05-OMB, which establishes State policy regarding grant agreements and/or agency contracts entered into by State agencies.

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Dairy Industry Stores

Proposed Rule Readoption: N.J.A.C. 2:53 
Proposal Date: March 21, 2011
Comment Period Closes: May 20, 2011

The rules proposed for readoption regulate the purchase and sale of milk and milk products by retail stores in the State of New Jersey, thereby providing protection to producers who sell and consumers who buy these products. As such, the rules proposed for readoption primarily affect stores licensed by the State of New Jersey to sell milk and milk products, and will also benefit New Jersey milk dealers, producers and consumers. By regulating the manner in which stores licensed by the Department of Agriculture display retail prices, the Department can ensure that consumers are properly informed. In addition, the notice requirement mandated by these rules is beneficial because it gives the milk dealer adequate notice of the change, so he or she does not have an oversupply of unsaleable milk and it assures all milk bills are paid in a timely manner. Consumers and producers are provided additional protection through the recordkeeping requirements set forth in these rules. These recordkeeping requirements assist the Division of Marketing and Development in determining whether a licensed store has complied with the applicable statutes and rules of the Division. In order to prevent predatory pricing, “variable cost” is defined and declares that it is unlawful to offer for sale or to sell milk or milk products below variable cost.


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Humane Treatment of Domestic Livestock

Proposed Rule Readoption with Amendments: N.J.A.C. 2:8
Proposal Date: January 3, 2011
Comment Period Closes: March 4, 2011

**Corrections in the body of the rule document:
Page 9 -- The correct link for the American Veterinary Medical Association Guidelines on Euthanasia should be: www.avma.org/issues/animal_welfare/euthanasia.pdf
Page 18 -- The correct link to the Transportation Quality Assurance Handbook should be www.pork.org/filelibrary/TQA/manual.pdf.

The Humane Treatment rules set the standards for feeding, watering, keeping, marketing and sale, and care and treatment of cattle, horses, poultry, rabbits, small ruminants and swine. The Humane Treatment rules also provide guidelines for the investigation of alleged violations and for the enforcement of humane standards.  The Department is proposing both readoption of the Chapter and changes to the rules mandated by the New Jersey Supreme Court in its July 30, 2008 decision in New Jersey Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, et al.v. New Jersey Department of Agriculture, et al. The New Jersey Supreme Court had affirmed in part, reversed in part and remanded the matter to the Department for further proceedings.The proposed amendments are fully developed consistent with the Court’s opinion and are clearly incorporated into the regulatory regime. 
The Department reviewed each practice, evaluated whether it can be performed in a humane manner and developed the appropriate references to describe such practices for the regulated community.  Other clarifications were addressed to respond to the Court’s concerns with respect to concepts incorporated in the original rule, such as “knowledgeable individual,” “sanitary” and “minimize pain” – in the context of amendments to the Humane Treatment rules.  The proposed rules and amendments provide science-based guidelines that producers and farm animal owners can follow, that will be honored by law enforcement as adequate standards, and that will prevent ad hoc enforcement imposing subjective, non-uniform standards across the State.  Proposed amendments update web access to referenced documents, add definitions, delete redundant definitions and sections, and clarify permitted practices. Proposed amendments identify husbandry practices that meet the standards for humane treatment of domestic livestock (therefore qualifying for the presumption provided pursuant to N.J.S.A. 4:22-16.1) and they address husbandry practices not specifically identified in the rules as meeting humane standards by providing scientific sources for evaluation of techniques for necessary livestock management. 
Amendments include general provisions for all species, techniques for acceptable methods for animal identification and animal waste management, acceptable methods and techniques for various procedures, updated transportation guidelines, and guidelines for care required by individuals and facilities caring for equine rescues.

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Quarantines

Proposed Rule Readoption with Amendments: N.J.A.C. 2:20
Proposal Date: December 6, 2010
Comment Period Closes: February 4, 2011

The rules proposed for readoption with amendments provide the means to protect the agricultural industry in New Jersey from highly injurious invasive pest threats. The amendments include removal of certain hive and transport restrictions, revision of naming for consistency with Federal lists and a proposed repeal subchapter 2:20-9 which deals with inspection, monitoring and control measures for the pine shoot beetle. The Department determined to repeal this subchapter because it is duplicative of a federal regulation and is burdensome to industry. The introduction of dangerously injurious insect pests or plant pathogens from another state or foreign country can constitute a serious threat to agriculture in New Jersey. In the current globalization of world trade, the prospect of spreading highly injurious plant pest species to new areas has increased, and there is a need to quarantine certain pests to prevent their introduction into New Jersey. Based on these factors, the New Jersey Department of Agriculture (NJDA) has proposed in these rules, the means by which the agricultural industry in New Jersey can be properly protected from highly injurious invasive pest threats. Subchapter 1 addresses the Golden Nematode as a serious threat to New Jersey agriculture. Subchapter 2 addresses the white pine blister rust as a dangerous plant disease Subchapter 3 addresses the Ceriferus (or Japanese) Wax Scale as a dangerously injurious insect and Subchapter 4 addresses the Mediterranean fruit fly as a dangerously injurious insect to the fruits and vegetables of the State of New Jersey. Subchapter 5 determines that the Africanized honeybee is a menace to the practice of apiculture and Subchapter 6 determines that the Khapra beetle is a highly injurious insect and constitutes a menace to food and grain stocks. These subchapters prohibit movement or importation of these threats. Subchapter 7 describes the roles and responsibilities of the Department, in cooperation with the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), in the inspection and monitoring of nursery stock imported from foreign countries. Subchapter 8 describes the roles and responsibilities of the Department, in the inspection, monitoring and control measures for the Asian Longhorned beetle (Anoplophora glabripennis), an invasive, foreign insect pest that is a serious threat to hardwood forests and shade trees. Subchapter 9 describes the roles and responsibilities of the Department, in the inspection, monitoring and control measures for the pine shoot beetle, Tomicus piniperda.

Amendments

N.J.A.C. 2:20-5.1 - The Department proposes to amend 2:20-5.1 to remove restrictions on hives with some genetic impurity and to remove limits on certain vehicles.

N.J.A.C. 2:20-8.4(a)1 – The Department proposes to amend the list or articles to make it consistent with the updated Federal list of host genera.

N.J.A.C. 2:20-9 - The Department proposes to repeal subchapter 2:20-9. The entire state is under federal quarantine for this pest. There is no need for separate state quarantine and associated movement restrictions.


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Quarantines and Embargoes on Animals

Proposed Rule Readoption: N.J.A.C. 2:5
Proposal Date: October 18, 2010
Comment Period Closes: December 17, 2010

The proposed rules include the delegation of authority (by the State Board of Agriculture to the Director of the Division of Animal Health) to take the actions necessary to protect the health of livestock and poultry in New Jersey including through quarantines in certain cases.  The proposed rules also address the imposition of an embargo as a result of disease outbreaks in other states.  Embargoes in this rule deal with the movement of animals coming from other states allowing the Department to stop the import of animals either suspected of or confirmed as having a contagious or infectious disease or to set up specific entry requirements based upon the originating location of the animals. 
The proposed rules also provide the requirements for the prevention of Vesicular stomatitis, a disease  which can affect horses, cattle and pigs, and occasionally, sheep, goats, deer and exotic animals, and allows the Division ways to control the disease if found in New Jersey. Similarly the proposed rules contain requirements for the eradication and control of equine infectious anemia (EIA) in equids and they contain general requirements to assist in the control and eradication of poultry diseases and diseases of livestock that may be devastating to New Jersey’s livestock and poultry industry. The proposed rules address imposition and lifting of quarantines, biosecurity requirements and penalties for violations of the chapter. 

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Sale and Distribution of Plants and Plant Material

Proposed Rule Readoption: N.J.A.C. 2:19
Proposal Date: November 1, 2010
Comment Period Closes: January 17, 2011

Comment Period Extension Notice

The proposed readoption is without change. These rules address the shipment of rose plants into and within the State of New Jersey because virus-infected rose plants cause a serious economic loss to both the grower that sells them and the consumer who buys them.  Since the virus infection remains in the plant for its entire life, and spraying cannot destroy the virus, it is important that infected plants be controlled at the source before entering New Jersey. 
Subchapter 2 describes the manner in which rose plants are to be shipped into, and within the State of New Jersey.   It states that virus infected plants are to be considered a nuisance and only rose plants inspected for symptoms of virus infection during the growing season by a state inspector in the state in which they were grown can be shipped into New Jersey.  Also, all shipments must carry certification of visual freedom from virus disease from the state of origin.

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Dairy Industry General Provisions

Proposed Rule Readoption: N.J.A.C. 2:48
Proposal Date: September 7, 2010
Comment Period Closes: November 6, 2010

The rules proposed for readoption define the marketing areas in New Jersey as included in Federal Milk Order No 1 (Northeast Marketing Area). They also regulate advertising of milk and milk products, denominating false, misleading or unfair advertising of milk and milk products an unfair trade practice and unlawful. These rules proposed for readoption provide for confidentiality of proprietary information contained in reports and records of dealers, processors, subdealers and stores obtained in implementing the regulations of the Department.  The proposed rules do not allow the use of coupons in any advertising media which results in the sale of any milk or fluid milk product below cost.


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Processors, Dealers and Subdealers

Proposed Rule Readoption: N.J.A.C. 2:52 
Proposal Date: September 7, 2010
Comment Period Closes: November 6, 2010

The rules proposed for readoption require milk processors, dealers and subdealers to maintain accurate records on milk transactions to assist the Division of Marketing and Development in its evaluation of licensees’ adherence to applicable New Jersey statutes and Division rules. The rules set forth various requirements to be met including before serving an unlicensed store, notice to the present supplier of a store requesting to change milk supplier and approval to serve unlicensed stores without notice under certain conditions.  The proposed rules also list conditions under which approval to change supplier may be denied.  In addition, it describes the conditions pertaining to the changing of a licensee’s source of milk supply, the instances when notice is and is not required and other requirements relating to notice. 
The proposed rules provide that licensed milk dealers are prohibited from selling milk below variable cost.  The term “variable cost” is defined in the subchapter and certain costs are required to be averaged.  Raw milk cost is also defined in this subchapter.

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Agricultural Liming Materials

Proposed Rule Readoption: N.J.A.C. 2:70 
Proposal Date: September 7, 2010
Comment Period Closes: November 6, 2010

Readoption of these rules is needed to (1) protect farmers and consumers by determining the manufacturer’s compliance with the guaranteed content of liming materials and (2) to reduce the amount of misbranded and deficient products offered for sale thereby insuring the quality and quantity of liming materials and promoting crop yield.  These rules proposed for readoption define materials, and require that manufacturers provide information on their label of the materials and guaranteed analyses of their contents.  Manufacturers are required to register their products prior to offering them for sale and to be responsible for fees and for tonnage inspection reports.


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Diseases of Bees

Proposed Rule Readoption: N.J.A.C. 2:24 
Proposal Date: August 2, 2010
Comment Period Closes: October 1, 2010

The proposed readoption is without change and the rules set forth definitions, define regulated articles and outline the inspection, certification and registration requirements of apiaries in New Jersey.The rules proposed for readoption address inspection and certification requirements for bee colonies entering New Jersey from out of state and require annual inspection rather than marking of out of state colonies by the respective state apiary inspector. The rules also include the procedure for the annual registration of overwintering bee yards with documentation provided to the registrant upon request. In addition, these rules include the inspection protocol used in the inspection and certification of apiaries, outlines sampling procedures and addresses the requirements for the safe and timely movement of bee colonies through the state.


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Jersey Grown Firewood and Sunflower Seeds


Proposed Rule Amendments: N.J.A.C. 2:71-7.3, 7.7 and 7.8
Proposal Date:   January 4, 2010
Comment Period Closes: March 5, 2010

The proposed amendments concern Jersey Grown firewood and Jersey Grown sunflower seeds, not for human consumption.  One proposed amendment clarifies the standards for firewood marketed under the Jersey Grown program that is grown on private lands to more clearly identify the necessary approval of a forest management plan.  The second proposed amendment deletes the reference to marketing firewood from State lands under the Jersey Grown program because the open bidding process in commercial use is incompatible with such marketing at this time.  The third proposed amendment revises the section providing standards for Jersey Grown sunflower seeds, not for human consumption, by adding the specific standard for insect damage. The last two proposed amendments correct the standard for heat damage, and remove the reference to US No. 2 or better in “other factors.”

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Equine Advisory Board

Proposed Rule Readoption with Amendments: N.J.A.C. 2:34 
Proposal Date:
  January 4, 2010
Comment Period Closes: March 5, 2010

These rules proposed for readoption with amendments are a compilation of the procedures used to regulate the non-racing breeder award program and the New Jersey Bred All Breed Horse Show and procedures for the determination of awards.  The rules proposed for readoption provide definitions of eligibility, classes, fees, and procedures for the determination of awards from equine promotion monies collected.  Amendments are provided for clarity, to remove some requirements to allow and encourage more participants and provide for the inclusion of the designated individual breed shows in determining breed shares of the year-end money.  Amendments also address the status of the equine industry by offering more flexibility, in view of changes that have occurred in the industry and to provide opportunities for participation to as many people as possible. Amendments, for example, allow consideration of results from three judges to count as separate shows, remove separate futurities show requirements (they are shown at regular shows) and grand and reserve classes (fewer offered).

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Livestock and Poultry Importation

Proposed Rule Readoption: N.J.A.C. 2:3 
Proposal Date:
  January 4, 2010
Comment Period Closes: March 5, 2010

The rules proposed for readoption set forth requirements for the socially beneficial programs that prevent the introduction of diseases which may be harmful to the health of the animal husbandry industry and to humans.  Additionally, these rules provide a measure of protection against introduction and spread of possible bioterrorist agents.  The prevention and control of disease through regulatory programs necessary to prevent the importation of diseased and/or disease carrying animals that may infect New Jersey’s livestock population are  key elements to the viability of animal agriculture.  Rules designed to protect New Jersey’s livestock from infectious and contagious diseases not only protect New Jersey livestock owners and producers, but also prevent the spread of these diseases to humans and thereby enhance national security.  The readoption of this rule is necessary to ensure the continued health of New Jersey livestock and poultry by protecting that population from diseases imported into the State. These rules address current national animal disease issues, recognize United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) regulation of interstate movement of livestock and address heightened security concerns.

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Disease Control Programs

Proposed Rule Readoption with Amendments: N.J.A.C. 2:2 
Proposal Date:
  December 7, 2009
Comment Period Closes: February 5, 2010

The proposed readoption with amendments is necessary to safeguard the health of livestock and poultry in the State by continuing important disease control measures, enforced by the New Jersey Department of Agriculture. These rules protect the health of livestock and poultry in the state, the safety of agricultural products produced with and from livestock and poultry in the State, and the consumer. Specifically, these rules enumerate those reportable diseases designated as a particular and dangerous menace to animal health in the State of New Jersey; provide for declaring epidemics of emergent proportion; and, if funds are available, provide for the indemnification of livestock ordered sent to slaughter to prevent the spread of disease. In addition, requirements are set forth for the control and eradication of brucellosis, tuberculosis and leukemia in cattle. There are also requirements relative to the control of disease in swine. The rule establishes requirements for sheltering and feeding swine and the identification, quarantine, disposition and indemnification of swine infected with hog cholera. Further, specific provisions are set forth for the control of pseudorabies virus in swine. The rules set forth general requirements for the control of disease in poultry, to include testing, reporting, quarantine and disposition of poultry infected with pullorum-typhoid. Also, the rules regulate the activities of cattle, sheep and swine dealers by establishing requirements for record keeping. The amendments correct typographical errors, add definitions, clarify the list of diseases reportable to the New Jersey Department of Agriculture and make other changes to be consistent with Federal rules or guidelines.

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Aquaculture Development

Proposed Rule Readoption: N.J.A.C. 2:89 
Proposal Date: 
July 20, 2009
Comment Period Closes:  September 18, 2009

The rules are proposed for readoption without change. The Aquaculture Development Act directed the Department of Agriculture to adopt a program for licensing the possession and ownership of aquacultured organisms through an Application for an Aquatic Farmer License and a permit coordination system to assist in completing and processing the application for licensing.  The Aquaculture Development Act also directed the Department of Agriculture to adopt rules and regulations establishing an Aquatic Organism Health Management Plan designed to protect public and private aquaculturists and wild aquatic populations from the importation of non-endemic disease causing organisms, and to assist in facilitating the exportation and importation of aquatic species into and out of the State.   It includes disease reporting and quarantine requirements. These proposed rules continue the established aquaculture policy framework that was begun in 2004 to continue to foster the orderly development of aquaculture.  This framework consists of an Aquatic Farmer License issued upon completion and approval of the Application for Aquatic Farmer License and acquisition of any additional permits that may be required by the NJDEP or any other agency.

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Organic Certification Program

Proposed Rule Amendments: N.J.A.C. 2:78-4.1 and 4.2 
Proposal Date: June 1, 2009
Comment Period Closes:  July 31, 2009 

The proposed amendments remove the references to the National Organic Program (NOP) in relation to the "Transitional Sustainable" mark; to remove the reference to "registered" entities, which incorporates NOP non-compliance procedures; and to add new subsections to clarify penalties and hearing procedures. These amendments correct the original rules’ language to more clearly delineate the relationship of the rules to the NOP, respond to the August 2008 audit conducted by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS), Audit, Review, and Compliance (ARC) Branch and provide a means of preventing the misuse of the "NJDA Certified Organic" and "Transitional Sustainable" marks. In addition, the Department also reviewed the rules for clarity, as well as monetary penalty and hearing procedures that were inadvertently omitted in the original rule. The amendments incorporate these changes.

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Expansion of Jersey Fresh and Jersey Grown Programs

Proposed Rule Amendments: N.J.A.C. 2:71-2 and N.J.A.C. 2:71-7 and New Rules N.J.A.C. 2:71-7.6, 7.7 and 7.8
Proposal Date: April 6, 2009
Comment Period Closes:  June 5, 2009

The proposed amendments to the Jersey Fresh Quality Grading program and the Jersey Grown program will provide appropriate regulatory guidance while maintaining the necessary standards associated with these programs.  The proposed amendments will increase the types of agricultural commodities eligible for marketing under the Jersey Fresh Quality Grading Program (and related logos) by including fresh for processing grades, packing requirements and packer identification.  The proposal includes the following changes: separate rules for asparagus are proposed for deletion or repeal because asparagus  is included with the fresh for processing commodities, container types allowed to be imprinted with the logo are increased, reporting requirements for growers necessary to ensure compliance relative to the additional products are added.  In addition, proposed amendments and new rules for the "Jersey Grown" program will permit New Jersey growers of turfgrass sod and sunflower seeds (not for human consumption), and woodland owners, including tree farmers, and firewood producers to use the "Jersey Grown" logo in marketing their plant material.  In addition, licensing and compliance rules for these commodities are provided.  New rules are also proposed to set forth the standards required for turfgrass sod, firewood and sunflower seeds (not for human consumption), respectively, to be eligible for sale under the Jersey Grown logo.

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Laboratory Services - Fees

Proposed Rule Amendments: N.J.A.C. 2:10-1.2
Proposal Date:
November 3, 2008
Comment Period Closes:  January 2, 2009

The rule amends the fee schedule for veterinary diagnostic services.  The schedule of fees is to defray the costs of animal disease diagnostic and testing services.  The collection of reasonable fees for animal disease diagnostic and testing services by the Department of Agriculture allows the Department to recover the costs incurred for materials, equipment, test kits, reagents, and associated personnel expenses for these testing services. The amendments are necessary to allow for the revision of user fees. There is a reduction of fees proposed, in some cases, to offer diagnostic and economic benefits by providing a lower cost option when certain diagnostic tests are reorganized in a group related to the type of service.  The amendments are with regard to laboratory fees for services offered.  One proposal adds a test and amends charges for bacteriology isolation and identification tests. Another amendment eliminates species disease specific test techniques previously listed because they are included in the general listing of the test technique and also amends charges for virology identification tests. A third amendment eliminates listing of disease specific tests previously listed because they are included under the general test reference. A fourth proposal provides the amended charges for pathology services, including necropsy of poultry (up to five birds) and disposal fees to address costs incurred. The final amendment sets forth amended (reduced) charges for battery testing.

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Criteria and Standards for Animal Waste Management

Proposed New Rules: N.J.A.C. 2:91
Proposal Date: March 2, 2008
Comment Period Closes:  May 2, 2008

The Department of Agriculture is proposing new rules to assist farmers in the development and implementation of an animal waste management program. 

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Agricultural Development in the Highlands

Proposed New Rule: Division of Agricultural and Natural Resources
Rule Proposal: N.J.A.C. 2:92
Proposal Date: August 15, 2005
Comment Period Closes:
October 14, 2005
The Highlands Water Protection and Planning Act (Highlands Act), signed into law on August 10, 2004 as P.L. 2004 c. 120, established regulations and monitoring requirements for the 800,000-acre Highlands region. The Highlands Act includes a special review process for agricultural and horticultural activities and related development in the Highlands Preservation Area and required the Department of Agriculture to promulgate rules for that purpose. The proposed new rules are designed to implement the process established by the Highlands Act for review of new agricultural or horticultural development within the Highlands Preservation Area. The Highlands Act provides that agricultural and horticultural development will be subject to different levels of review based upon the percentage of increase in new agricultural impervious cover that result from proposed agricultural or horticultural development. Any impervious cover that existed within a Farm Management Unit prior to the enactment of the Highlands Act shall not be considered new agricultural impervious cover. The purpose of requiring a Plan when the three percent or nine percent trigger is met either individually or cumulatively is to ensure that operations do not seek to circumvent the requirements of these proposed new rules by continual, but small expansions, that would fall below the designated trigger. Any agricultural or horticultural development in the Preservation Area that would result in the increase of three percent or more of new agricultural impervious cover to the total land area of a Farm Management Unit (either individually or cumulatively) since enactment of the Highlands Act will require the farm owner or operator to develop and obtain Soil Conservation District (SCD) approval of a Farm Conservation Plan, prior to the start of the proposed agricultural or horticultural development. The Farm Conservation Plan will address New Jersey- Field Office Technical Guide (FOTG) Quality Criteria for soil and water resources, as well as Endangered and Threatened Species Habitat. The Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) -FOTG is a science based, national standard for implementing natural resource management practices that are time tested and proven. The FOTG is the basis for all United States Department of Agriculture Farm Bill conservation programs as well as for New Jersey Department of Agriculture (NJDA) programs. The NRCS-FOTG meets the goals of the Highlands Act, as these are the practices implemented to protect not only water and soil but also other natural resources. Any agricultural or horticultural development in the Preservation Area that would result in the increase of nine percent or more of agricultural impervious cover to the total land area of a Farm Management Unit (either individually or cumulatively) since enactment of the Highlands Act will require the farm owner or operator to develop and obtain SCD approval of a Resource Management System Plan (RMSP), prior to the start of the proposed agricultural or horticultural development. Prior to approval, the SCD will transmit a copy to the DEP, who must review and approve it with or without conditions or deny it within 60 days of receipt. The RMSP is a comprehensive Farm Conservation Plan that meets NRCS’s highest standards for resource sustainability by addressing all resource management concerns on the farm, including soil, water, air, plants and animals. A copy of the approved Farm Conservation Plan or RMSP shall be transmitted by the SCD to the State Soil Conservation Committee. If any part of the Farm Management Unit is preserved under any farmland preservation program, a copy of the plan shall also be transmitted by the SCD to the State Agriculture Development Committee (SADC). The Farm Conservation Plan and the RMSP shall be based on the NJ-FOTG. The new rule will set forth the definitions necessary to clarify agricultural development activities from major development as defined in the Highlands Act and outline the Farm Conservation Plan elements for agricultural or horticultural development that would result in three percent or more of new agricultural impervious cover to the total land area of the farm management unit (either individually or cumulatively) within the Highlands Preservation Area. The rule also outlines the RMSP elements for agricultural or horticultural development that would result in nine percent or more of new agricultural impervious cover to the total land area of the farm management unit (either individually or cumulatively) within the Highlands Preservation Area. The proposal sets forth penalty provisions. Penalties up to a maximum of $5,000 per violation per day may be assessed. Factors considered when assessing penalties include: (1) the seriousness of the conduct; (2) the amount of new impervious cover that has been developed; (3) the type of conduct (major, moderate, minor); (4) the violator’s previous compliance history; and (5) whether a plan has been implemented. Persons aggrieved by a determination under this subchapter are afforded the opportunity for a hearing thereon in the manner provided for contested cases pursuant to the Administrative Procedure Act.

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