Weekly Newsletter For The Week Of December 24, 2018

Nevada Farm Bureau Newsletter For The Week Of December 24, 2018

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More Details On Proposed Nevada Water Law Changes

In the last issue of This Newsletter we highlighted the background and details for one of the pre-filed pieces of legislation that lawmakers will be dealing with in 2019 – AB 30 AB 30 deals with legislating a framework for 3M plans (management, monitoring and mitigation) for water, which basically seeks to do a workaround to the state’s prior appropriations doctrine of law. If the State Engineer so decides, senior water right owners might not have the water they should have because of junior water right applications being granted along with mitigation to make up for the loss.

Another proposed legislative measure that the State Engineer’s office is bringing forward is AB 51. AB 51 is legislation that seeks to establish a framework for “Conjunctive Management” of water sources.

In the 2018 Nevada Legislature, the State Engineer’s office was successful in inserting the language into state law, that it is the intention of the Nevada Legislature to manage water in a conjunctive manner. This was accomplished through SB 47. Beyond combining water management for the sections of state law dealing with surface water and ground water, through this stated “intention,” no other details provided specifics on what that meant.

The proposed regulations by the State Engineer for the Humboldt River system provided the first glimpse of what might be intended. This concept proposed to avoid curtailment of interference by junior water right owners (those pumping groundwater in the vicinity of the Humboldt River) by paying a fee to be used to reimburse the lost water that surface water right owners (who are more senior) are incurring.

Nevada Farm Bureau went on record as not supporting this regulatory proposal, which is now back in some status of rewrite. The argument that Farm Bureau made in opposing the proposal was that the State Engineer didn’t have the authority to ignore the prior appropriations doctrine and not carry out the curtailments for impacts to water right owners by arbitrary regulations to use cash payments as the offset. AB 51 basically is written to cover the shortfall of legislated authority and have the state law changed to give the authority that wasn’t there.

In and of itself, the idea that “Conjunctive Management” should have something more by way of a framework than a passing statement of intent, but post-dating such specific authority to cover the predetermined plan for the regulation that the State Engineer thought was a solution isn’t probably the best way to approach things. What are your thoughts or ideas? Please join the conversation and share these views with doug@nvfb.org.

Humboldt River Basin Meetings Planned – Jan. 15 & 16

In last week’s newsletter, we also reported the updated plans for workshops that the Nevada Division of Water Resources will be holding to share the newest information gathered on the Humboldt River Basin water modeling studies, which are being carried out by the U.S. Geological Survey and the Desert Research Institute (DRI). These studies are developing the data for what is taking place in three reaches of the Humboldt River and are going to be used in addressing the groundwater and Humboldt River water conflicts. The information presented during the workshops will be dealing with further research that has been done and the findings over the past year.

Those impacted by the plans that the State Engineer’s office is working to implement, using the discovered science of the water modeling studies, need to make every effort to attend these critical workshops:

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

9:30 a.m. – Lovelock City Hall (400 14th St) Lovelock, NV

2:00 p.m. – Humboldt County Courthouse – Room 201 (500 West 5th St) Winnemucca, NV

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

9:30 a.m. – Elko County Library (720 Court St) Elko, NV

Federal Regulation For Livestock Hauling Continues The ELD Exemption For Foreseeable Future

The announcement has come from Washington, D.C. on the website for the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) that “Transporters of livestock and insects are not required to have an Electronic Logging Device (ELD). The statutory exemption will remain in place until further notice. Drivers do not need to carry any documentation regarding this exemption.”

This isn’t a new development, but does serve to clarify where things stand. It intended to cover the potential shutdown of the U.S. Government, if another Continuing Resolution (CR) is achieved when the current funding band aid expires on December 21.

Both the House and Senate have passed appropriations bills with ELD prohibition language for the next fiscal year.

American Farm Bureau Federation Lobbyists Recognized For Their Work In Representing Farm Bureau Policy

Three members of the American Farm Bureau Federation’s (AFBF) lobbying team have been identified by the publication The Hill as being tops in their field as association lobbyists. Congratulations to Andrew Walmsley, R.J. Karney and Scott Bennett for the recognition given.

Farm Bureau members benefit from the full-time lobbying efforts the organization offers, strengthened by the engagement that Farm Bureau members contribute in their contacts with elected representatives at the state and national level.

The Road To Becoming 100…

In a few weeks a group of Farm Bureau members from Nevada will be traveling to participate in the 2019 American Farm Bureau Federation’s (AFBF) Annual Meeting. Along with the usual business of determining future public policy positions, information conferences on a wide range of topics, those attending this year’s annual meeting will be celebrating the Farm Bureau history of 100 years. Those type of “round number” milestones are fairly significant events and will be marked by taking into account the noteworthy accomplishments of the past, but also launching the organization into the future.

In his account of “The Farm Bureau Through Three Decades”, Orville Merton Kile shared the history of Farm Bureau that went back as far as the pre-Farm Bureau days and the formation of county Farm Bureaus (Broome County in New York and Pettis County in Missouri). These organizations, which were formed in 1912 and 1913 were first created to bring county extension agents to their respective communities, assisting local farmers with education and information provided by Land Grant University research. These early county Farm Bureaus pre-dated the passage of the Smith-Lever Act by Congress on May 8, 1914.

From the formation of county Farm Bureaus, state Farm Bureaus evolved in several states and Feb. 12-13, 1919, representatives from 12 states gathered in Ithaca, NY to consider the idea of forming a national organization. These first dozen states included Delaware, Illinois, Iowa, Massachusetts, Michigan, Missouri, New Hampshire, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Vermont and West Virginia. The outcome of this initial meeting and further developments lead to the plan for a November 12 and 13, 1919 meeting in Chicago to move forward with the organization of a national Farm Bureau. This gathering occurred in the Red Room of the LaSalle Hotel in Chicago with about 500 delegates and visitors attending.

Meanwhile in Nevada… On February 25, 1919 a bill (AB 110) was introduced in the 29th Session of the Nevada Legislature, by Assemblyman Care C. Tidd of Smith, Nevada. The purpose of the bill was to provide for cooperative agricultural and home economics – extension – work in several counties in accordance with the Smith-Lever Act and provide for the organization of County Farm Bureaus.

Following formation of an authorized county Farm Bureau, the bill directed that it would become recognized as the “official body within said county for carrying on extension work in agriculture and home economics in cooperation…”

AB 110 passed the Nevada Assembly on a 22 to 0 vote on March 13, 1919 and passed the Nevada Senate on March 14, 1919 on an 11 – 0 vote.

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