February 23, 2007

Senator Brent Steele of Indiana Betrays Farmers

An urgent alert from Mary Zanoni:

Please make people aware of a big problem in Indiana. The sponsor of what was once an antiNAIS bill has today offered an amendment that would make it a pro-NAIS bill. People must be told that the amendment (or the bill as amended) must not be permitted to pass.

On Mon. 2/19, the Indiana Senate Ag & Small Business Committee voted out to the full Senate a bill that at the time was an anti-NAIS bill -- the bill was originally sponsored by Brent Steele (R-44th Dist.) and the text as introduced and as voted out of committee would have essentially stopped the Indiana Board of Animal Health from continuing with their mandatory premises
ID program.

I received a forward of an e-mail dated Tues. 2/20 from Steve Bonney, president of an Indiana small-farming organization called Sustainable Earth, expressing happiness over the bill passing out of committee and urging people to contact senators to get them to vote for the bill.

However, today, there is a very, very ominous development on this bill. The sponsor himself, Senator Steele, has moved to amend the bill into a PRO-NAIS bill. I have spoken to Steve Bonney of Sustainable Earth and he reports that the state vet and the lone member of the Ag Committee who would not support the original bill "got to" sponsor Steele and made him offer the pro-NAIS amendment. According to Steve Bonney, at present all people can do is to urge Sen. Steele to withdraw the amendment to SB 486; (Sen. Steele's phone numbers are 317-232-9400 or 800-382-9467) or else, to tell their own senators to vote against the amended bill.

Below is the link to and text of the amendment. The amendment gives Indiana BOAH the green light for their mandatory premises ID and also sets the stage for them to conduct a coerced "voluntary" animal ID and animal tracking.


SB 486-1_ Filed 02/22/2007, 09:01 Steele



I move that Senate Bill 486 be amended to read as follows:

Delete everything after the enacting clause and insert the following:

SOURCE: IC 15-2.1-18-24; (07)MO048603.1. --> SECTION 1. IC 15-2.1-18-24
IS ADDED TO THE INDIANA CODE AS A NEW SECTION TO READ AS FOLLOWS [EFFECTIVE JULY 1, 2007]: Sec. 24. (a) As used in this section, "NAIS" refers to the
USDA's National Animal Identification System or any component thereof, including:
(1) premises or property identification by numbers (Stage I);
(2) animal identification (Stage II); and
(3) tracking or surveillance of domesticated animals (Stage III).
(b) As used in this section, "USDA" refers to the United States
Department of Agriculture, and any successor agency within the federal
(c) The state may not require participation in the livestock
identification (Stage II) or tracking components (Stage III) of the USDA's
National Animal Identification System.
(d) The state may not withhold indemnity as provided under section 14 of
this chapter if a person does not participate in NAIS.
(Reference is to SB 486 as printed February 21, 2007.)

Use this link to email Senator Steele http://www.in.gov/cgi-bin/legislative/contact/contact.pl?data=Senate|Steele,Brent|s44|sr

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