It rained all of May and most of June in Vermont. It has been raining and raining while we have been gone. I just saw an article in the Burlington Free Press that the USDA has declared the natural distasters in every county of Vermont. It has created a nightmare for the farmers who lost most of their early crops and now are having a hard time getting a chance to catch up with the growing season.
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One thought on “Vermont rain creates a USDA designated natural disaster”
USDA is a natural distaster. Do you know about the National Animal Identification System?Gun owners don’t have to do it. Pedophiles don’t have to do it. AIDS carriers don’t have to do it. But, apparently, my chickens and your sheep are more dangerous and will be subject to be under constant surveillance once the National Animal Identification System become mandatory.Late last week, the Agency of Agriculture published the Draft Premises Registration Rulemaking. This 9-page document includes the following key provisions:1.Biennial Registration Renewal Required2.Those who keep "livestock" in this state will register their premises with VAAFM. For the purposes of this rule, "Livestock" includes cattle, sheep, goats, equine, deer, American bison, swine, poultry, pheasant, Chukar/partridge, Coturnix quail, camelids, and ratites. This term shall include cultured trout (6 VSA §1151).3.Registration does not create any "ownership" rights that do not otherwise exist. It merely identifies a location in this state at which livestock are kept. The unique premises code remains with that location, even if the registrant changes (some exceptions apply).4.Operators of livestock facilities currently licensed by VAAFM (dairy farms, cervid farms, animal markets, livestock dealer premises, livestock transporter premises, slaughter establishments, equine quarantine facilities, and rendering establishments) must register the facilities licensed to them and may not let others register those premises for them. Generally, license holders will be able to register as part of their license renewal.5.The registration requirement under this rule will be implemented in a two-tiered process. Livestock operations that sell product to the public will need to register within 6 months. Those who keep livestock as a hobby or for personal use will need to register within one year.6.There is no fee to register livestock premises. A person may register on-line or in writing on forms provided by VAAFM. Forms will be readily available from VAAFM and/or contract agent. VAAFM will send biennial renewal forms to registrants to make renewal as easy as possible. Renewals, like initial registrations, may be transacted on-line.7.Each registrant must provide the following information:-Registrant’s legal name, trade names if any, mailing address, and phone number.-Primary premises location and up to 3 secondary locations included in the registered premises.-Name and phone number of a contact person with knowledge of livestock movements to and from all locations comprising the premises, if different from above.-Type(s) of livestock operation (e.g. Farm, Slaughterhouse, etc).-Type(s) of livestock kept.-The information is protected and confidential under 6 VSA §61.The Agency has also scheduled 14 public hearings, which hopefully will be published soon in in this newspaper. As I look at the schedule with its 2 hour time slots it occurs to me that the Agency doesn’t think there will be a very good turn out as they are holding two hearings a day, one in each of two counties, 1 1/2 hours apart. You can find the schedule on the Agency’s website.Whether you are a farmer or not, you must come out for the hearings. Consumers are going to have to share the financial burden, taxes will have to go up to pay for the program once the grant from the USDA runs out. Consumers will also face a further degrading of the quality of food, higher food prices, loss of the Buy Local movement and once RFID chips are considered normal in animals, people will not going to be far behind.Please note the official comment period is NOT YET open. If you send comments before the comment period, they will not be official, and the Agency will not be required to respond to your comments. The comment period will begin on July 25th. All comments submitted after the comment period have to be answered by the Agency, thousands ofcomments will keep