As the 2022 session of the General Assembly got here to an in depth this week, Commissioner of Agriculture Dr. Ryan Quarles applauded various agriculture-related payments that had been handed.
Quarles additionally applauded the legislators’ work on the Kentucky Department of Agriculture’s (KDA) price range. In whole, KDA’s working price range is greater than $86 million, together with General Fund, restricted and federal funds.
For the primary time, KDA’s price range additionally displays the cash appropriated to the Kentucky Office of Agricultural Policy (KOAP). Last legislative session moved the workplace from the Governor’s Office to the KDA. KOAP is accountable for grants and loans for agricultural pursuits from funds supplied by the Tobacco Master Settlement Agreement. This 12 months’s legislative session put the cash allotted to the Kentucky Agriculture Development Fund straight in KDA’s funds together with greater than $26 million for state funds and $14 million for county allocations.
Additional objects of observe in KDA’s price range embrace:
• A $500,000 appropriation for KDA’s Raising Hope marketing campaign, a collaboration endeavor, which companions KDA with state universities and the Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services. The program focuses on the psychological and bodily well being of agricultural producers.
• The Farm to Food Banks Program, which permits purchases of Kentucky-grown produce from collaborating Kentucky farmers, noticed a rise from $500,000 to $600,000.
• The County Fair Grants, designated to help capital enhancements at county fairgrounds throughout the commonwealth, elevated from $300,000 to $455,000.
Though not a part of KDA’s price range, Kentucky agriculture households and the agriculture communities in western Kentucky might get help from HB5 and SB5, companion payments that present round $200,000,000 in funds to the West Kentucky State Aid Funding for Emergencies for twister catastrophe restoration and reduction. The tornadoes from Dec. 10-11, 2021, and Jan. 1, 2022, devastated many rural agriculture-focused communities within the western portion of the state.
House Bill 390 enacts an vital measure that calls consideration to agricultural alternatives for the state.
• HB 390 directs the Cabinet for Economic Development to give discover to the Agriculture Commissioner when it receives details about an agricultural-related alternative. The discover would permit KDA to take part in plans, discussions, and conferences to give the state full benefit in agriculture-related endeavors.
• HB 271 reorganizes the membership of the Fair Council and the Agritourism Advisory Council. The invoice additionally clarifies the duties for the Office of State Veterinarian are to keep the well being of welfare of agricultural industries for livestock, poultry, and fish.
• HB 273 displays adjustments to statutes governing amusement journey laws. It additionally will increase the quantity of legal responsibility insurance coverage the house owners should keep.
• HB 306 updates statutes defining KDA’s obligations with respect to pesticides and noxious weeds.
• HB 451 implements adjustments to some motor gas statutes. The adjustments revise authorized definitions for some sorts of motor gas and what constitutes a retail facility.