Murphy’s Law 2019 #8

January 28, 2019

There has been discussion on legislation that would authorize the transfer of APUC, the Agricultural Products Utilization Commission, to the North Dakota Department of Agriculture (NDDA). It is currently under the umbrella of the Department of Commerce where it has resided the past 20 years or so after being taken out of the NDDA. The Ag Commissioner is on the APUC board so has a lot of knowledge about what goes on there should that legislation, 2328, go forward. APUC has a focus on Value-Added Agriculture and we support that bill. Commerce testified in favor of keeping APUC housed in Commerce.
Another bill which would move the North Dakota Trade Office (NDTO) from Commerce to Ag is 2329. The Ag Commissioner is also on that board. The NDTO handles many areas in addition to agricultural trade as they work on UAS (unmanned aerial systems), manufacturing, energy, information technology and intermodal systems to name a few. We have remained neutral for now on 2329.
All three farm home tax exemption bills were heard this morning as well with Scott attending. The first was 2351 which says that all counties shall use the form that producers fill out for their county to get the exemption. 20 of our 53 were not using it. The second was 2360 which would get rid of the $40,000 threshold and use 66% of gross income instead. The third, 2278, would make sure the financial records submitted to the county for application would remain private information. NDSGA supported all three.