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AB-2468 Bees: apiaries: registration: colony relocation: administrative civil penalty.(2017-2018)

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Date Published: 09/10/2018 09:00 PM
AB2468:v95#DOCUMENT

Assembly Bill No. 2468
CHAPTER 320

An act to amend Sections 29042, 29045, 29046, 29070, 29070.5, and 29074 of, and to add Section 29313 to, the Food and Agricultural Code, relating to bees.

[ Approved by Governor  September 10, 2018. Filed with Secretary of State  September 10, 2018. ]

LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 2468, Arambula. Bees: apiaries: registration: colony relocation: administrative civil penalty.
Existing law, the Apiary Protection Act, provides for the regulation and management of apiaries. Existing law requires that registration of an apiary be filed with the agricultural commissioner of the county in which the apiary is located, or with the Secretary of Food and Agriculture if there is no agricultural commissioner in the county. Existing law requires every person who moves bees into the state or otherwise comes into possession of an apiary that is located within the state after the first day of January to register the number of colonies moved into the state or so acquired within 30 days after coming into possession of the apiary.
This bill would instead require every person who moves bees into the state or otherwise comes into possession of such an apiary to register the name of the owner and the number and location of colonies moved into the state or so acquired within 30 days after coming into possession of the apiary. To the extent that the bill would impose additional duties on county agricultural commissioners, the bill would impose a state-mandated local program.
Existing law prohibits a person from maintaining any apiary that is not registered pursuant to the above-described provisions.
This bill would instead provide that it is unlawful for a person to maintain any apiary that is not registered pursuant to those provisions.
Existing law requires any person relocating a colony of bees from a registered apiary in one county to another county, where the apiary is currently not registered, to notify the destination county agricultural commissioner by telephone within 5 days of the first movement.
This bill would instead require any such person relocating a colony of bees to make that notification within 72 hours of the first movement.
Existing law provides that any apiary operator or his or her designated representative relocating a colony of bees within a county where the apiary is currently registered is not required to notify the county agricultural commissioner of the movement.
This bill would instead require any apiary operator or his or her designated representative relocating a colony of bees within a county where the apiary is currently registered to notify the county agricultural commissioner of the movement. By imposing new notification requirements, a violation of which is a crime, the bill would impose a state-mandated local program.
Existing law makes it an infraction for any person to fail to comply with specified requirements governing bee management, and imposes specified penalties for each infraction, as prescribed. Existing law further subjects any person not complying with those requirements, or any notice or order issued pursuant to certain provisions or regulations, to a civil penalty of not more than $500 for each day that the violation continues.
This bill would, on and after January 1, 2020, additionally authorize the secretary or a county agricultural commissioner, in lieu of prosecution, and in addition to any other penalties prescribed for violations of specified provisions regulating bee management, to impose an administrative civil penalty for a violation of certain requirements regulating the registration and identification of apiaries and the relocation of bee colonies, pursuant to a prescribed hearing and appeals process.
This bill would also make various nonsubstantive changes.
The California Constitution requires the state to reimburse local agencies and school districts for certain costs mandated by the state. Statutory provisions establish procedures for making that reimbursement.
This bill would provide that with regard to certain mandates no reimbursement is required by this act for a specified reason.
With regard to any other mandates, this bill would provide that, if the Commission on State Mandates determines that the bill contains costs so mandated by the state, reimbursement for those costs shall be made pursuant to the statutory provisions noted above.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: YES  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 Section 29042 of the Food and Agricultural Code is amended to read:

29042.
 Every person who moves bees into the state or otherwise comes into possession of an apiary that is located within the state after the first day of January, shall register the name of the owner and the number and location of colonies moved into the state or so acquired within 30 days after coming into possession of the apiary.

SEC. 2.

 Section 29045 of the Food and Agricultural Code is amended to read:

29045.
 It is unlawful for a person to maintain any apiary that is not registered pursuant to this article. Each registration is valid until January 1 of the following year.

SEC. 3.

 Section 29046 of the Food and Agricultural Code is amended to read:

29046.
 (a) No person shall maintain an apiary on premises other than that of his or her residence unless the apiary is identified as follows:
(1) By a sign that is prominently displayed on the entrance side of the apiary or stenciled on the hive, that states in dark letters not less than one inch in height on a background of contrasting color, the name of the owner or person responsible for the apiary, his or her address and telephone number, or if he or she has no telephone, a statement to that effect.
(2) If the governing body of the county or city in which the apiary is located has provided by ordinance for the identification of apiaries, in the manner that is prescribed in the ordinance.
(b) No person shall locate or maintain an apiary on private land not owned or leased by the person unless the person has approval from the owner of record, or an authorized agent of the owner of record, and can establish approval upon demand of the secretary or commissioner. The approval shall include the name and phone number of the person granting approval.
(c) (1) No person shall locate or maintain an apiary on any public land without the expressed oral or written approval of the entity that owns, leases, controls, or occupies the land, and can establish this approval upon demand of the secretary or the commissioner. The approval shall include the name and telephone number of the person granting the approval. During the citrus bloom period, as established by the commissioner, including 72 hours before the declaration of the bloom period until 48 hours after the conclusion of the bloom period, the apiary operator shall obtain written permission to place bees on public land, and shall make it available to the secretary or the commissioner upon demand. Any apiary located or maintained on public land without lawful consent is a public nuisance and may be subject to seizure by the secretary or the commissioner.
(2) The secretary or commissioner may commence proceedings in the superior court of the county or city and county in which the seizure is made petitioning the court for judgment forfeiting the apiary. Upon the filing of the petition, the clerk of the court shall fix a time for a hearing and cause notices to be posted for 14 days in at least three public places in the place where the court is held, if the person owning the apiary is unknown, setting forth the substance of the petition and the time and place fixed for its hearing. At that time, the court shall hear and determine the proceeding and upon proof that the apiary was located or maintained on public lands without approval of the entity, may order the apiary forfeited. Any apiary so forfeited shall be sold or destroyed by the secretary or the commissioner. The proceeds from all sales shall be used in accordance with Section 29032.

SEC. 4.

 Section 29070 of the Food and Agricultural Code is amended to read:

29070.
 (a) Any person relocating a colony of bees from a registered apiary in one county to another county, where the apiary is not registered for the current calendar year, shall notify the destination commissioner within 72 hours of the first movement. The notification shall include all of the following:
(1) The name and address of the apiary operator or his or her designated representative.
(2) A telephone number where the apiary operator or his or her designated representative may be reached.
(b) The apiary operator or his or her designated representative shall provide locations of each colony upon request by the commissioner of any county.
(c) Subsequent movement into the destination county shall not require further notification to the commissioner if, when the apiary operator removes the last colony from the county, he or she notifies the commissioner of that final movement within 72 hours.

SEC. 5.

 Section 29070.5 of the Food and Agricultural Code is amended to read:

29070.5.
 Any apiary operator or his or her designated representative relocating a colony of bees within a county where the apiary is currently registered shall notify the commissioner of the movement.

SEC. 6.

 Section 29074 of the Food and Agricultural Code is amended to read:

29074.
 The secretary, by written permit, subject to conditions the secretary may determine are necessary to protect the beekeeping industry of this state, may authorize federal and state agencies to transport and maintain within the state diseased bees, comb, hives, appliances, or colonies for the purpose of studying methods of eradicating and controlling bee diseases.

SEC. 7.

 Section 29313 is added to the Food and Agricultural Code, to read:

29313.
 (a) In lieu of prosecution, and in addition to any other penalty that is provided in this chapter, the secretary or the commissioner may impose an administrative civil penalty on a person who violates Article 4 (commencing with Section 29040) or Article 5 (commencing with Section 29070), or any regulations adopted pursuant to this chapter to implement those articles.
(b) An administrative civil penalty imposed pursuant to this section shall be levied in proportion to the violation, measured as either “serious,” “moderate,” or “minor.”
(1) “Serious” violations are repeat or intentional violations, punishable by an administrative civil penalty of not less than four hundred one dollars ($401) and up to a maximum of one thousand dollars ($1,000) per violation.
(2) “Moderate” violations are repeat violations or violations that are not intentional, punishable by an administrative civil penalty of not less than one hundred fifty-one dollars ($151), but not more than four hundred dollars ($400) per violation.
(3) “Minor” violations are violations that are procedural in nature, punishable by an administrative civil penalty of not less than fifty dollars ($50), but not more than one hundred fifty dollars ($150) per violation.
(c) Before an administrative civil penalty is imposed pursuant to this section, the person charged with the violation shall receive written notice of the proposed action, including the nature of the violation and, if applicable, the amount of the proposed civil penalty. The person shall have the right to request a hearing within 20 days after receiving notice of the proposed action. A notice that is sent by certified mail to the last known address of the person charged shall be considered received even if delivery is refused or if the notice is not accepted at that address. If a hearing is requested, notice of the time and place of the hearing shall be given at least 10 days before the date set for the hearing. At the hearing, the person shall be given an opportunity to review the secretary’s or the commissioner’s evidence and to present evidence on his or her own behalf. If a hearing is not timely requested, the secretary or the commissioner may take the action proposed without a hearing.
(d) If the person, upon whom the commissioner imposed an administrative civil penalty, requested and appeared at a hearing, the person may appeal the commissioner’s decision to the secretary within 30 days of the date of receiving a copy of the commissioner’s decision. The following procedures apply to the appeal:
(1) The appeal shall be in writing and signed by the appellant or his or her authorized agent, state the grounds for the appeal, and include a copy of the commissioner’s decision. The appellant shall file a copy of the appeal with the commissioner at the same time it is filed with the secretary.
(2) The appellant and the commissioner, at the time of filing the appeal or within 10 days thereafter or at a later time prescribed by the secretary, may present the record of the hearing and a written argument to the secretary stating the ground for affirming, modifying, or reversing the commissioner’s decision.
(3) The secretary may grant oral arguments upon application made at the time written arguments are filed.
(4) If an application to present an oral argument is granted, written notice of the time and place for the oral argument shall be given at least 10 days before the date set therefor. The times may be altered by mutual agreement of the appellant, the commissioner, and the secretary.
(5) The secretary shall decide the appeal on the record of the hearing, including the written evidence and the written argument described in paragraph (2), that he or she has received. If the secretary finds substantial evidence in the record to support the commissioner’s decision, the secretary shall affirm the decision.
(6) The secretary shall render a written decision within 45 days of the date of appeal or within 15 days of the date of oral arguments or as soon thereafter as practical.
(7) On an appeal pursuant to this section, the secretary may affirm the commissioner’s decision, modify the commissioner’s decision by reducing or increasing the amount of the civil penalty levied, if applicable, so that it is within the secretary’s guidelines for imposing administrative civil penalties, or reverse the commissioner’s decision. Any civil penalty increased by the secretary shall not be higher than that proposed in the commissioner’s notice of proposed action given pursuant to subdivision (c). A copy of the secretary’s decision shall be delivered or mailed to the appellant and the commissioner.
(8) Any person who does not request a hearing with the commissioner pursuant to a civil penalty imposed under subdivision (c) may not file an appeal to the secretary pursuant to this subdivision.
(9) Review of a decision of the secretary may be sought by the appellant within 30 days of the date of the decision pursuant to Section 1094.5 of the Code of Civil Procedure.
(e) After the exhaustion of the appeal and review of procedures provided in this section, the commissioner, or his or her representative, may file a certified copy of a final decision of the commissioner that directs the payment of a civil penalty, and, if applicable, a copy of any decision of the secretary, or his or her authorized representative, rendered on an appeal from the commissioner’s decision and a copy of any order that denies a petition for a writ of administrative mandamus, with the clerk of the superior court of any county. Judgment shall be entered immediately by the clerk in conformity with the decision or order. No fees shall be charged by the clerk of the superior court for the performance of any official service required in connection with the entry of judgment pursuant to this section.
(f) In addition to the administrative civil penalties prescribed in subdivision (b), the appellant may be required to cover the cost of the administrative hearing unless the decision of the secretary or the commissioner is overturned.
(g) This section shall become operative on January 1, 2020.

SEC. 8.

 No reimbursement is required by this act pursuant to Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution for certain costs that may be incurred by a local agency or school district because, in that regard, this act creates a new crime or infraction, eliminates a crime or infraction, or changes the penalty for a crime or infraction, within the meaning of Section 17556 of the Government Code, or changes the definition of a crime within the meaning of Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution.
However, if the Commission on State Mandates determines that this act contains other costs mandated by the state, reimbursement to local agencies and school districts for those costs shall be made pursuant to Part 7 (commencing with Section 17500) of Division 4 of Title 2 of the Government Code.