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Legislatively Speaking
Results of ag-related bills in Hartford
 

By Gordon Gibson, Legislative Committee Chairman

  JULY/AUGUST 2007 --

ELEPHANT BILL: The “elephant bill” died on the House calendar for lack of action.  Everyone expects it will be back for the 2008 session.  At the IAFE meeting in Cromwell it was learned that similar bills have been filed in several other states around the country.  Although the bill did not pass in Connecticut this year, we have to give the people who are pushing for this bill a lot of credit for the progress they made with it this year.  I’m not going to predict whether or not it will pass next year, but sooner or later it probably will pass.

DAIRY SUPPORT BILLS: The three bills providing financial support for dairy farmers based on the price of milk passed the Senate but all died on the House calendar for lack of action.  While none of these bills would have affected our fairs directly, it is likely that without support more of our dairy farmers will sell out their herds, thus reducing the opportunities for youngsters to lease a few animals for their 4-H projects.

BLOOD TESTING OF DRAFT ANIMALS: The State budget for the fiscal year beginning July 1, 2007 is still being negotiated in the back rooms of the Capitol.  Dr. Bruce Sherman has requested $5,000 in the Department of agriculture’s budget for blood testing of draft animals in pulling contests, the same as he had last year.  We won’t know whether or not this is still in the budget until we see what comes out on the floor for action.

RABIES REGULATIONS: The Department of Agriculture is drafting permanent regulations concerning rabies and isolation of those species for which there is no approved rabies vaccine.  The Department had planned to have the regulations in place before the start of our 2007 fair season, but the pet store owners have filed enough objections that a public hearing will have to be held.  Dr. Sherman anticipates this hearing will be sometime in July.  He also assures that the regulations as they will apply to fairs will be very similar to the emergency order issued several years ago.  Basically our fairs can keep doing everything the way they have been doing it under the emergency order.

 
 
 

 
     
     
       
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