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Rules and Regulations for Colorado

All 50 states have Representatives that have been placed in office by the voters, isn't it time to take a hard look at who will remain or who should be voted out? 

Fair makes premise ID mandatory


LAKEWOOD - Exhibitors at the 2008 Colorado State Fair will be required to register the location where the animal was raised with the controversial National Animal Identification System.

The Fair's board of commissioners voted 8-1 to stand by the policy it set forth last year, which drew controversy.

Future Farmers of America and 4-H members will have to register with the NAIS their premise identification or the physical location to show in the Junior Livestock Sale.

The board's decision came here Friday at its monthly meeting, held at the state Department of Agriculture.

The only commissioner to vote against the policy was Raeana Wadhams of Pueblo, who was present via telephone. Of the 10 commissioners on the board, only Loren Whittemore of Wray, who expressed opposition to premise ID at the October meeting in Pueblo, did not attend.

Premise ID was a controversial topic before it came to the State Fair. Last year the Fair voted to make it mandatory because 4-H and FFA groups showed strong support of it and supporters said it is a valuable tool for quick traceability - 24 to 48 hours - in the case of an animal disease outbreak.

Opponents argue that registration is an invasion of privacy and that government agencies were pushing an agenda on youth Ag producers.

"We're not saying it's 4-H and we're going to use those kids or brainwash them," said Commissioner Catherine Ross. "The department of ag has identified (the Fair) as a possible place for disease outbreak."

Two exhibitors were disqualified from the show this year because their premises weren't properly registered. In the end, both individuals were compensated for what their replacement animal sold for.

At the October meeting two opponents of premise ID talked with board members and supplied them with large packets of information. The Fair also received some letters, including one from a group of legislators, opposing the policy.

Here on Friday, after long discussion with state ag officials on the subject, the board voted to stand by its policy and will look at expanding premise ID requirements to all large animals that will be on the Fairgrounds during the 11-day expo.

"Any type of leadership comes with criticism," said John Stulp, state commissioner of agriculture. "I think we did right by the state and the Colorado State Fair in a step to ensure the safety of our livestock industry.

"I offer the opportunity to people who oppose (premise ID) to ask them how do we rapidly respond on a disease outbreak. It's one thing to say that it infringes on someone's rights, but we really need to get to the (center) of it. If there's a better way to protect our livestock industry, we need to do it. Let's look at what the alternatives are."

Those close to the debate said that premise ID registration, which is a voluntary program, will ultimately be driven by the livestock industry.

Jeanne Robinson, livestock coordinator for the Fair, said packing plants in the state are looking at making premise ID required before slaughter.

"They have policies in the making to only accept from county fairs that have premise IDs," she said.

"Premise ID is just one of many tools we need for rapid traceability" Stulp said.

Animals competing at the Fair must have a health certificate or pass a health exam at the Fair.

There are some pitfalls, according to Lindsay Wadhams, horse show coordinator. She said horses are often housed at stables while their owners live elsewhere, but the stable owner does not want their address listed for the animal's ID.

"That would be a rare occasion and if they wanted to show they'd have to find another stable," Stulp said.

Premise ID registration can be done online or on mail-in forms. Board members looked at the mail-in sheets and agreed the information required was minimal and that there were other areas of public record where more information could be found.

"There's no Social Security number, bank account information. They don't even ask for your driver's license," said Fair attorney Steve Smith.

Ag officials said mail-in ID information is kept locked in file cabinets while electronic info is stored in secured databases. They said they're looking further into the security of information.

I sent a letter to all the Colorado Reps concerning NAIS and 4-H ,

09-12-07 Response received from Josh Penry

Sen. Brophy and Rep. Gardner deserve kudos for taking this up.  And I look forward to helping them.  All the best, josh

09-11-07 Response received from Rep Jerry Sonnenberg.

Notes from the Outhouse Wall – September 10, 2007

By State Representative Jerry Sonnenberg

            Even in its best light, it is still no more than heavy handed government beating up on children. I’m talking about the Colorado Department of Agriculture and Cooperative Extension through Colorado State University taking a federal voluntary premise identification program and turning it into a mandated program for 4-H and FFA kids that show livestock in Colorado.

            To give you a little background the National Animal Identification Program is a federal plan to allow producers to register their ranch into a national database to provide information in case of a disease outbreak in America. It remains voluntary because we have a fairly good system that has been in place for decades to trace animals. That system has worked before when we found a cow with “mad cow disease” and were able to track its movement out of Canada.

            So why do we need to force the kids that show animals at their county and state fairs to register in a federal database? That’s the same question that I have.

            This plan is scheduled to be mandated to all county fairs for 2008 and was implemented at the state fair this year bringing a firestorm of controversy. There were kids that elected not to take animals to Pueblo because of this policy and then a couple of youth were removed from the sale for not complying with the mandate. How many kids will leave these youth programs because of this unwarranted mandate?

            Now you might say that 4-H and FFA are organizations that you choose to belong to so you should have to abide by their mandates and I would agree except that the county fairs and especially the state fair are held using taxpayer dollars. These organizations are just one piece of the much larger fair event and are now making an attempt to hold these fairs hostage.

            The purpose of the federal premise ID program is to find all of the animals that an infected animal has had contact with in a short period of time. These young people that are now being targeted have better records than any commercial operation in which pens of cattle or livestock are put together in load-lots. These young people in most cases know where each and every one of their animals were born, raised and the progeny of their project. This is not the group that will benefit the premise ID vision and seems to be no more than heavy handed rule making with a solution looking for a problem.

            There are much more pressing issues that need to be dealt with at the state level and I shouldn’t have to spend this amount of time on issues like this. However, as an elected official I have made it a priority to keep government from sticking their nose where it doesn’t belong.

            This is a case where they are sticking their whole head some place.

            (Representative Sonnenberg serves the 65th House District which includes Logan, Phillips, Sedgwick and a large portion of Weld counties. He can be reached by email at jerry.sonnenberg.house@state.co.us)


 Jerry Sonnenberg

Colorado State Representative

      4465 Road 63

      Sterling, CO 80751


Copy and paste to Download the Derry Brownfield show. He  will be  discussing  Premises ID number, 4H kids being refused to sell their livestock due to "Currently Voluntary NAIS" .
To the people of Colorado, do you remember your history about Adolph Hitler, using children to report parents and neighbors? Well it is happening in CO with your children who participate in 4-H and FFA. Do not voluntary sign up for a premises id. Ask them where it states in the LAW BOOKS, This program is not Mandatory in Colorado. Write to your reps loud and clear that you will refuse all participation in the NAIS.

Posted 08-17-07
County fairboard opposes premises ID in secret ballot

Custer County's Fair Board opposes mandatory premises ID for 4-H and FFA youth. Earlier this month, the county fair board decided to sign a resolution stating opposition to  the mandate requiring Colorado's FFA and 4-H youth to obtain a premises identification in order to show their animals at the county and state fairs.

Premises ID registration lists the name and address of the ranch where the animal is raised and the ranch owner.

Beginning in October, Colorado State University Extension and Colorado FFA Association will require all 4-H and FFA youth enrolling in livestock projects to obtain a premises ID.

Seven fair board members voted in favor of stating opposition to the premises ID and are sending a resolution stating such; one fair board member did not approve of the resolution. Board member Beverly Goertz abstained.

Since the vote was taken via secret ballot, the naysayer was not named.

Immediately following the vote, fair board president Anne Crewdson resigned.  Remaining fair board members are Kirk Ruzanski, Sheila Davis, Joanne Canda, Rhoda Reid, Jack Canterbury, Greg Watkins, Roy Gillmore and Goertz.

Non-voting members are 4-H Foundation representative Eugene Berry, FFA Advisor Tom Flower and county extension director Karen Crumbaker.

Earlier this month, the county commissioners also signed a resolution opposing mandatory premises ID registration for 4-H and FFA youth.

At that time, the commissioners cited premises ID is voluntary for ranchers and many 4-H and FFA youth have indicated they will no longer participate in the county fair due to the new regulation.

Premises identification is the first step toward a national animal identification system being considered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture for livestock, in order to trace and track the livestock to protect against disease.

County extension agent Karen Crumbaker told the Tribune she conducted a survey regarding premises ID registration during the county fair in July.

Twenty-one 4-H livestock families were asked their opinion about premises ID registration, said Crumbaker.  Ten were in favor of premises ID, eight were against it, and one was undecided, said Crumbaker.

Crumbaker further noted there are 45 4-H families in Custer County which equates to 18 percent opposition to the policy.

Crumbaker estimated some five to 10 families against premises ID would not enroll in 4-H for the 2007-2008 year due to the new requirement.

Due to the opposition, Crumbaker said the fair board is now considering a proposal to support a non sanctioned 4-H and FFA county fair if the premises ID requirement for 4-H and FFA youth remains.

The commissioners have said they would support such a proposal, however, they would need to see a written proposal.

– Nora Drenner

We don’t live in Colorado but they are putting up a valiant effort to oppose mandatory NAIS in their state. They say chickens come home to roost, so what happens to Colorado could happen to our state. We need to remain vigilant and steadfast in our resistance to this draconian program. Guard against apathy, take 10 minutes and get INVOLVED to help 4 H and FFA kids! This is a great home-school project to take on.

State-Wide Coalition Urges CSU’s Cooperative Extension To Return To Its Mission of Education and Outreach

The Colorado Coalition Opposing Mandatory 4-H and FFA Premises Registration has confirmed that Colorado State University’s Cooperative Extension Service will conduct a review of its mandatory 4-H premises identification policy following the Colorado State Fair this year, but the institution has stipulated that the review does not mean the policy will be rescinded. Incoming Director of Extension, Dr. Debra Young, will be responsible for conducting the review. Young will replace Dr. Marc Johnson, who currently serves as Interim Director.

On March 28, 2007 Colorado State 4-H Director Jeff Goodwin issued a directive to Colorado County Extension Agents indicating that all Colorado 4-H livestock project animals (beef and dairy cattle, sheep, swine, goat, poultry, llama and horse) must have a premises registration for participation in 4-H and FFA projects after October 1, 2007. The decision to implement state wide mandatory premises registration for 4-H youth in Colorado was an arbitrary decision made in September 2006 by the 4-H Livestock Task Force, which was comprised of 15 to 20 county extension agents. The State 4-H Director and Dr. Marc Johnson agreed.

“The time to seek input from Colorado 4-H families about the decision to mandate premises registration for youth was before the directive was issued, not after the fact,” commented John Reid, Ordway, CO, Chairman of the Coalition. “The 4-H families directly impacted by this decision were not permitted to participate in the decision-making process, signaling a significant disconnect between the land grant university and its constituents. The coalition urges Colorado State University administrators to leave participation in premises registrations as a voluntary program, as it is on the federal level. ”

“The National Animal Identification System (NAIS) will have no effect on preventing animal disease, since it will only be called into use after a disease outbreak,” noted Reid. “The Livestock Act of 2005 equips the State of Colorado with the appropriate mechanisms to implement mandatory premises registrations and animal identification in the event of a disease outbreak,” continued Reid.

“Learning institutions, like our land grant universities, should be using precious resources to educate future producers about animal health disease controls and mitigation and proper animal management techniques. University resources being spent on the premises registration issue would be much more effectively used to educate 4-H youth about animal disease causes, prevention, risk mitigation and food safety, and we urge Cooperative Extension to develop such a curriculum for 4-H. ”

In a letter dated June 1, 2007 to Colorado County Commissioners, Dr. Marc Johnson stated,

“4-H is an educational program for youth which is based on experiential learning. 4-H establishes contest rules to provide fair and safe learning experiences which transmit knowledge and principles which last long beyond the county or state fair event…laws do not currently require record keeping, meat quality assurance training, premises registration, or the wearing of closed-toe shoes, but all of these items are in 4-H livestock contest rules to provide learning of business practice, product quality, public health and safety related to livestock production. Presently there is a small portion of the public opposed to premises registration of livestock as a national policy; this group is using 4-H youth to advance their political action. This debate should stay in the public policy arena rather than in the non-political, non-policy arena of youth educational events.”

Reid responded saying, “Dr. Johnson is correct that this issue should remain in the public policy arena rather than being mandated by Cooperative Extension for youth events. The university’s action to implement mandatory premises registration for 4-H youth put this debate squarely in the arena of youth education events. He is incorrect when he describes those opposed as a ‘small’ group. The action taken by Colorado State University’s Cooperative Extension is widely viewed as predatory exploitation of youth rooted in an effort to enhance the number of livestock premises registered in Colorado. The meat quality assurance program is certainly an educational program that youngsters benefit from. It does not, however, require the enrollment of private property as a prerequisite for participation.”

“One has to wonder why, with a new Director of Extension taking over later this summer, Colorado State University administrators have chosen to saddle this person with such a controversial and unpopular mandate,” continued Reid. “It would have been much wiser to let the new appointee come into her position and permit her to seek appropriate public input. One has to ask, who benefits from this decision and what’s the rush. The coalition urges Colorado State University’s Cooperative Extension Program to get back to its mission of education and outreach.”

Individuals or organizations wishing to join the Colorado Coalition Opposing Mandatory 4-H and FFA Premises Registration should contact John Reid at 719/446.5210

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Premises Registration will be an "Official" USDA unique seven Character identifier.
In the New User Guide it states on Page 22:
The premises identification number (PIN) is assigned permanently to a geophysical location. If an owner or entity sells his/her farm, the next operators of the premises use the original premises identification number that had been
assigned to that location. If the seller buys a new location to build a new operation that never had livestock, he/she would register that location and obtain a new premises identification number (PIN).

Premises Identification = Encumbrance

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