Montana Administrative Register Notice 4-14-224 No. 6   03/26/2015    
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BEFORE THE Department of Agriculture



In the matter of the amendment of ARM 4.12.1405 pertaining to nursery fees





TO: All Concerned Persons


1. On January 29, 2015, the Department of Agriculture published MAR Notice No. 4-14-224 pertaining to the public hearing on the proposed amendment of the above-stated rule at page 47 of the 2015 Montana Administrative Register, Issue Number 2.


2. The department has amended the above-stated rule as proposed.


3.  The department has thoroughly considered the comments and testimony received. A summary of the comments received and the department's responses are as follows:


COMMENT 1: The nursery program fee increase is too high given the work that is done.


RESPONSE 1: The nursery program is a fee-based program, as are the majority of the Agricultural Sciences Division's programs. We appreciate and understand that licensing and inspection fees for businesses are added expenses and do have an impact. There is, unfortunately, not an alternative funding mechanism. There are two fees associated with the current proposed administrative rule:  nursery certification hourly fee and clean plant indexing fee. The nursery certification hourly fee needs to reflect the actual personnel cost associated with conducting nursery certification inspections and are not applicable to routine nursery inspections, which have their own fees. General inspections fees remain the same and are not being proposed for change under this administrative rule. The clean plant indexing fee was inadvertently dropped in a previous administrative rulemaking. The proposed rule reinstates the fee but did not change the fee. As with nursery certification, the clean plant indexing fee is specific to clean plant indexing and is not applicable to general nursery inspections.



/s/ Cort Jensen                                    /s/ Ron de Yong              

Cort Jensen                                          Ron de Yong

Rule Reviewer                                       Director



Certified to the Secretary of State March 16, 2015.



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