Law:Division 2. Local Administration (California)

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Contents

Chapter 1. County Department Of Agriculture

Ca Codes (fac:2001-2003) Food And Agricultural Code Section 2001-2003



2001. There is in each county government the county department of agriculture.


2002. The county department of agriculture is under the control of the county agricultural commissioner.


2003. The California Agricultural Commissioners and Sealers Association shall be recognized as the official representative body on behalf of county agricultural commissioners and sealers.


Chapter 2. County Agricultural Commissioners And Their Employees

Article 1. Qualifications

Ca Codes (fac:2101-2107) Food And Agricultural Code Section 2101-2107



2101. (a) The director shall examine persons who desire to become commissioners or deputy commissioners. He or she may adopt regulations which govern the examinations. Successful candidates shall be given a license which shall be valid for five years unless revoked. (b) The director may charge each candidate a fee to cover the actual cost of providing the license examination.


2102. (a) The director shall pass upon the qualifications of persons who desire to become county agricultural inspectors and shall issue licenses to successful candidates. (b) The director may charge each candidate a fee to cover the actual cost of providing the license examination.


2103. The director shall issue a license, for any county which has a charter that provides for civil service examination of county agricultural inspectors, to any person who presents a certificate which shows that the person has passed the examination.


2104. A commissioner, deputy commissioner, or county agricultural inspector need not be a resident of the county for which he may be chosen.

2105. Prior to entering upon his duties, the commissioner shall file the usual oath, and he shall be required to file an official bond in an amount determined by the board of supervisors, unless he is covered by a master bond pursuant to Section 1481 of the Government Code.


2106. No person shall be eligible for the examination or shall be given or issued a license pursuant to Section 2101, 2102, or 2103 unless he or she possesses a bachelor's degree from an accredited four-year college with specialization in one or more appropriate disciplines in the agricultural, biological, chemical, or physical sciences, or other appropriate disciplines, as determined by the secretary. If a person is registered as a senior in an accredited four-year college in one of the specializations described herein, that person shall be admitted to the examination, but a license shall not be issued until that person graduates. In determining whether or not a college is accredited, the secretary may rely on accreditation granted by a state or national association formed and operated for the purpose of determining accreditation. This section shall not apply to any person holding a valid license of qualification in weights and measures who was employed by a county agricultural commissioner or sealer in a permanent classification before January 1, 1995, and who possesses at least one license in an agricultural category no later than December 31, 1996.


2107. The director shall publish and make available a registry of persons holding a license pursuant to Section 2101, 2102, or 2103 and Section 12202 of the Business and Professions Code.


Article 2. Appointment And Employment

Ca Codes (fac:2121-2129) Food And Agricultural Code Section 2121-2129



2121. The commissioner shall be appointed by the board of supervisors of the county. Any chartered county may, however, prescribe a different method of appointment.


2122. The term of office of the commissioner shall be four years from and after his appointment and until his successor is appointed. He may, however, be removed pursuant to this chapter.


2123. Except as otherwise provided in this chapter, a person shall not be appointed to the office of commissioner or deputy commissioner unless he or she has a license issued by the director. The license of any qualified incumbent shall be renewed without further examination.


2124. If the board of supervisors of such adjoining county consents, the board of supervisors of any county in which there is no commissioner may employ a qualified commissioner or a qualified deputy commissioner of the adjoining county to perform the duties of commissioner in the employing county. A commissioner or deputy commissioner who is so employed shall have such authority and powers as are conferred upon a commissioner by this code. He is not required to comply with residence or other qualifications for office within the employing county.


2125. In any county in which no commissioner has served, the director shall perform the duties of commissioner in the same manner, to the same extent, and with the same authority as if he had been the duly appointed commissioner in such county.


2126. The commissioner may appoint deputy commissioners, inspectors, and clerks who shall serve at his pleasure. Such inspectors may be designated as county agricultural inspectors or county agricultural biologists.


2127. Deputy commissioners and inspectors shall be appointed from a list which is furnished by the director of persons who hold a license for the office.

2128. If the position of deputy commissioner cannot be filled from the list, a temporary appointment may be made for a period not exceeding six months upon the written recommendation of the director.


2129. If the position of inspector cannot be filled from the list, a temporary appointment not exceeding six months may be made.


Article 3. Vacancies

Ca Codes (fac:2151-2154) Food And Agricultural Code Section 2151-2154



2151. If a vacancy in the office of commissioner occurs, the director, upon learning of the vacancy, shall immediately transmit to the board of supervisors or other appointing power a list of persons who are licensed by him or her to be eligible for the position.


2152. If, within 60 days after the receipt of the list of persons who are licensed, the appointing power fails to appoint a commissioner from the list, the secretary shall appoint a commissioner from the list.


2153. If there is no qualified person available for the office of commissioner, the appointing power may make a temporary appointment, for a period not exceeding three months, of a person who is recommended in writing by the director.

2154. If the appointing power does not make a temporary appointment of a commissioner and no person can be appointed from the eligible list by the director, the director may make a temporary appointment of a person who is competent to carry on the duties of the office for a period not exceeding three months.


Article 4. Removal

Ca Codes (fac:2181-2187) Food And Agricultural Code Section 2181-2187



2181. Upon satisfactory evidence presented to the Secretary or the Director of the Department of Pesticide Regulation that the commissioner of any county is guilty of neglect of duty, incompetence, or misconduct in office, the trial board that is selected, pursuant to this article, shall hold a hearing at the time and place specified by the trial board. The secretary shall convene the trial board when the alleged offenses come under the jurisdiction of the Department of Food and Agriculture, and the director shall convene the trial board when the alleged offenses come under the jurisdiction of the Department of Pesticide Regulation.


2182. The county agricultural commissioner's trial board shall be composed of the Secretary and the Director of the Department of Pesticide Regulation, a person who has knowledge of, or experience in, agriculture, selected by the board of supervisors of the county of the charged commissioner, and a hearing officer from the Office of Administrative Hearings, who shall be chairman and a voting member of such board. The department that convenes the trial board is responsible, under Section 11370.4 of the Government Code, for the cost of the services provided for by the Office of Administrative Hearings in carrying out the provisions of this section.


2183. At least 10 days prior to the date of the hearing the director shall give notice in writing to the commissioner of the time and place of the hearing and such information as to the nature of the charges as will enable the commissioner to present a defense to the charges.


2184. At the hearing the trial board shall hear the evidence which is offered.


2185. The trial board shall, within 30 days subsequent to the conclusion of the hearing make an order dismissing the charges or an order disqualifying the commissioner.


2186. If the order disqualifies the commissioner, the director shall revoke the commissioner's license and declare his or her office vacant. A copy of the order shall be immediately transmitted by the director to the board of supervisors and the auditor of the county in which the commissioner held office.

2187. The license of a deputy commissioner may be revoked in the same manner and for the same causes that a license of a commissioner may be revoked.


Article 5. Compensation

Ca Codes (fac:2201-2206) Food And Agricultural Code Section 2201-2206



2201. The compensation provided for a commissioner, deputy commissioner, county agricultural inspector, or clerk who is employed by the year or by the month shall be paid out of the county treasury in the same manner and at the same time as county officers are paid. A commissioner and each deputy commissioner or inspector is entitled to receive his traveling and incidental expenses which are necessarily incurred in the performance of his duty. Such expenses and all compensation which is earned by a commissioner, deputy commissioner, inspector, or clerk who is not employed by the year or by the month are a county charge. The board of supervisors shall allow and pay them in the same manner as other claims are allowed and paid.


2203. The commissioner shall be paid his or her compensation and traveling and incidental expenses while he or she is attending the annual meeting of the California Agricultural Commissioners and Sealers Association or its successor and any other meetings he or she is required by the secretary to attend, or while he or she is on any service that requires him or her to go outside the county if the performance of that service has been authorized by the board of supervisors, the secretary or director, or this code.


2204. The compensation of a commissioner who is appointed by the director shall be paid in the same manner as if he were appointed by the board of supervisors.


2205. The rate and manner of payment of compensation for a commissioner who is employed pursuant to Section 2124 shall be fixed by the board of supervisors of the employing county. He is entitled to receive his traveling and incidental expenses which are necessarily incurred in the performance of his duty.


2206. The board of supervisors of any county in which the director is required by Section 2125 to perform the duties of commissioner shall, upon claim which is duly submitted, reimburse the department for all expenses which are incurred by the director in fulfilling his responsibilities in performing such duties. The amount of reimbursement shall not, however, be in excess of an amount which is established by an agreement between the board of supervisors and the director pursuant to Section 482 of this code or Section 25801 of the Government Code.


Article 6. Cooperative Salary Agreements

Ca Codes (fac:2221-2224) Food And Agricultural Code Section 2221-2224



2221. For the purpose of this article the base salary of a commissioner is the salary, or if a salary range is established, the lowest step in such range, which was established for the position for the month of January, 1959.

2222. For the purpose of securing more uniform and adequate enforcement of this code throughout the state, the director may enter into cooperative agreements with the board of supervisors of any county which relate to the compensation of the county agricultural commissioner of the county, or which relate to compensation of the county for services which are performed for the department.


2223. In the agreement the board of supervisors shall agree not to reduce the salary of the commissioner to less than the base salary. The director may agree to pay to the county a sum not to exceed six thousand six hundred dollars ($6,600) per year to be used for the salary of the commissioner, or to compensate the county for services which are performed for the department. The amount which is paid to a county shall not, however, exceed two-thirds of the amount of the salary which is paid to its commissioner.


2224. The director may agree with the board of supervisors of any county in which no salary was established for the position of commissioner for January, 1959, that the state will pay not to exceed six thousand six hundred dollars ($6,600) per year of the amount to be used for payment of the salary of a commissioner for such county, or of a commissioner who is employed pursuant to Section 2124. The amount which is paid the county shall not, however, exceed two-thirds of the amount of the salary which is paid to the commissioner.


Article 7. Offices, Equipment And Supplies

Ca Codes (fac:2241-2244) Food And Agricultural Code Section 2241-2244



2241. As used in this article "commissioner" includes a commissioner who is employed pursuant to Section 2124.


2242. The board of supervisors shall provide a suitable office for the commissioner, and shall furnish and equip his office with all necessary furniture, supplies, and effects for the proper discharge of his duties.

2243. The board of supervisors may also provide the commissioner with all necessary field equipment for the proper discharge of the duties of his office.

2244. All expenses which are ordered by the board of supervisors for the office, furniture, supplies, effects, and equipment for the commissioner are a county charge. The board of supervisors shall allow and pay such expenses out of the general fund of the county.


Article 8. Powers And Duties

Ca Codes (fac:2271-2287) Food And Agricultural Code Section 2271-2287



2271. The commissioner shall keep a record of his official acts.


2272. (a) The commissioner shall make an annual report to the director on the condition of agriculture in his or her county and on what is being done to eradicate, control, or manage pests, and actions relating to the exclusion of pests or quarantine against pests. The commissioner may include in the annual report information relating to organic farming methods, biotechnology, integrated pest management, and biological control activities in the county. The commissioner shall also furnish from time to time to the director any other information the director may require. (b) This section shall become operative July 1, 1999.


2273. The commissioner shall also make a monthly report to the board of supervisors if and when so required by the board.


2274. The commissioner shall learn about all pests that may exist, or are likely to exist, in his county.


2275. The commissioner, for the purpose of learning the best and most efficacious methods of performing his or her duties, shall attend the annual meeting of the California Agricultural Commissioners and Sealers Association or its successor, and any other meetings as the secretary or director shall require.


2276. The commissioner shall, for the purpose of becoming informed about new and dangerous agricultural pests, observing and learning new and better methods of pest control, and determining the best and most efficacious methods of conducting the work of his department, consult with staff members of the United States Department of Agriculture, the State Department of Agriculture, the University of California, and with agricultural commissioners of other counties. He shall make such trips outside of the county which are necessary for such purposes, if authorized by the board of supervisors.


2276.5. (a) The Legislature finds and declares that, acting under policy direction of the Secretary of Food and Agriculture, California' s unique system of county agricultural commissioners forms the front line of defense in protecting the state from the many exotic and invasive species threatening our people, commerce, and environment. (b) It is the intent of the Legislature that agricultural commissioners take an increasingly assertive and proactive role in the exclusion and detection of exotic and invasive species in the urban environment, particularly those potentially spread by human activities, such as landscaping and yard maintenance.


2277. The commissioner shall, if directed by the board of supervisors, collect, prepare, and install exhibits for public information which illustrate the work of his department, depict the resources of the county, or display the products of the county.


2278. The commissioner may disseminate information which relates to pests that may exist in his county, or are likely to exist in it. The information may include life histories, habits, methods of detection, and methods of control of such pests.


2279. The commissioner shall compile reports of the condition, acreage, production, and value of the agricultural products in his county. The commissioner may publish such reports, and shall transmit a copy of them to the director.

2280. The director, when acting in person with a commissioner, has all the rights of such commissioner.


2281. Except as otherwise specifically provided, in all cases where provisions of this code place joint responsibility for the enforcement of laws and regulations on the director and the commissioner, the commissioner shall be responsible for local administration of the enforcement program. The director shall be responsible for overall statewide enforcement and shall issue instructions and make recommendations to the commissioner. Such instructions and recommendations shall govern the procedure to be followed by the commissioner in the discharge of his duties. The director shall furnish assistance in planning and otherwise developing an adequate county enforcement program, including uniformity, coordination, training, special services, special equipment, and forms, statewide publicity, statewide planning, and emergency assistance. The instructions and recommendations shall include a cost analysis of the local administration of such programs, determined from data supplied by the commissioner pursuant to Section 2272. Such cost analysis shall identify the joint programs or activities for which funds necessary to maintain adequate county administration and enforcement have not been provided. The director shall develop, jointly with the commissioners, county priorities for such enforcement programs and activities. The director shall report annually to the Legislature his findings concerning the cost analysis with specific regard to programs where funds are inadequate for an efficient enforcement program, together with a listing of the priorities jointly established by the director and the commissioners that are contained in the formal instructions and recommendations of the director.


2282. (a) Except as provided in Section 2282.5, and to the extent funds are appropriated in the annual Budget Act, the Secretary of Food and Agriculture or the Director of Pesticide Regulation may allocate annually to each county an amount determined by the secretary or the director not to exceed one-third of the amount expended by the county during the previous fiscal year for the programs of joint responsibility under the jurisdiction of the secretary or director, as applicable. The allocations shall be made from funds appropriated to the secretary or the director for purposes of carrying out activities of joint responsibility with the commissioners at the local levels. (b) The annual report to the Legislature required by Section 2281 shall include findings for each of the following joint programs, including the amounts allocated to, and expended by, the counties in the previous fiscal year and the proposed amount to be allocated by the secretary for each program for the ensuing budget year: (1) Pest detection. (2) Pest eradication. (3) Pest management control. (4) Pest exclusion. (5) Seed inspection. (6) Nursery inspection. (7) Fruit and vegetable quality control. (8) Egg quality control. (9) Apiary inspection. (10) Crop statistics. The report shall also specify the programs that have been augmented with state funds each year since 1980 because of new legislative mandates, or because of pest infestations or outbreaks occurring since that date, and the annual amounts of those augmentations.


2282.5. (a) The development of work plans for allocation of the funding appropriated in the Budget Act to the department for local assistance for agricultural plant and animal pest and disease prevention shall be the responsibility of the department. The department shall establish criteria for the development of the work plans and for allocating the appropriated funds. (b) Of the amount appropriated in the Budget Act to the department for local assistance for agricultural plant and animal pest and disease prevention, five million five hundred thousand dollars ($5,500,000) shall be utilized solely for high-risk pest exclusion activities. The work plans for the exclusion of high-risk pests shall be developed by the department with the county agricultural commissioners and in consultation with affected industry representatives. In order to determine the effectiveness of high-risk pest exclusion programs in each county, the criteria established by the department for the work plan shall include, but need not be limited to, the following: (1) The number of high-risk plant shipments entering each county. (2) The number of high-risk entry points in each county. (3) The number of state action quarantine pests intercepted or detected annually in each county. (4) The work hours expended by each county in conducting exclusion of high-risk pests. (5) The rate of interceptions and rejections per inspection activity. (c) To remain eligible for funding under this section, a county shall maintain its support of ongoing operational costs of the county agricultural commissioner programs listed in subdivision (b) of Section 2282, at 1997-98 fiscal year levels. (d) Funds allocated for high-risk pest exclusion activities pursuant to subdivision (b) may not be expended for any purpose other than the exclusion or detection of high-risk pests consistent with the work plans prescribed in subdivision (a) or scientific evaluation. Funds allocated by each county on or after September 28, 1998, shall not be allocated to other programs listed in subdivision (b) of Section 2282 until the county work plan is approved by the department consistent with the funding appropriated in the Budget Act to the department for local assistance for agricultural plant and animal pest and disease prevention for this purpose.


2283. The commissioner, in carrying out his responsibilities under Section 2281, may assist the department in the conduct of surveys or investigations pursuant to Section 461 for the purpose of preventing the introduction and spread of injurious insect or animal pests, plant diseases, and noxious weeds under Section 403.


2284. The commissioner may, with the approval of the board of supervisors, contract with any person or association to certify the condition of a shipment of a product regulated under this code. The condition certified to may include the temperature of the product. The contract shall provide for payment to the commissioner for the commissioner's total cost in performing the certification.


2285. For the purpose of developing necessary information and securing the best results for agriculture in this state, the commissioner may correspond and meet with any interested individual, agency, group, association, or educational institution with an interest in, or information regarding, agricultural practices, as resources allow. As used in this section "agriculture" includes, but is not limited to, developments and issues regarding all agricultural practices, traditional and alternative pest control methodology, and other areas of agriculture resource management. The California Agricultural Commissioners and Sealers Association may provide a forum by which a commissioner keeps informed and may facilitate discussions with other associations, institutions, agencies, organizations, or groups relating to resource management and protection for agriculture.

2286. The discretionary immunity doctrine as applied to a public entity and an employee of a public entity pursuant to Sections 815.2 and 820.2 of the Government Code applies to decisions of a county department of agriculture and an employee of a county department of agriculture enforcing a state or local pest control or pest eradication statute, regulation, or ordinance. Nothing in this section authorizes or affects the filing of an action challenging the legal authority of the county department of agriculture to undertake the pest control or eradication action.


2287. Whenever the commissioner determines that it is necessary to more effectively or more efficiently carry out a program listed in subdivision (b) of Section 2282, the commissioner may enter into a mutual aid agreement with other counties for the purpose of sharing staff, equipment, expertise, information, and other resources necessary to meet the needs of the program.


Chapter 3. County Veterinarian

Article 1. Appointment

Ca Codes (fac:2301-2302) Food And Agricultural Code Section 2301-2302



2301. A county veterinarian may be appointed by the board of supervisors whenever the public welfare demands the services of such veterinarian.

2302. The veterinarian shall serve at the pleasure of the board of supervisors.


Article 2. Compensation

Ca Codes (fac:2321) Food And Agricultural Code Section 2321



2321. The veterinarian shall receive a salary which is fixed by the board of supervisors. It shall be payable at the same time, in the same manner, and from the same fund as other county officers are paid.


Article 3. Powers And Duties

Ca Codes (fac:2341-2344) Food And Agricultural Code Section 2341-2344



2341. The veterinarian shall act under the supervision of the director.

2342. The veterinarian shall enforce throughout the county all of the provisions of this code which relate to the health and sanitary surroundings of livestock, poultry, and rabbits. He shall enforce within unincorporated territory all orders and ordinances of the board of supervisors which relate to such subjects.


2343. The veterinarian may establish such quarantine, sanitary, and other regulations within his jurisdiction as he deems necessary.


2344. The veterinarian shall attend such meetings as are deemed necessary and advisable by the board of supervisors.


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