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Administrative Rules
The Ohio Revised Code (ORC) requires and authorizes the Ohio Department of Agriculture (ODA) to adopt administrative code rules.

Stakeholder Review

Within the rulemaking process, ODA’s goal to ensure that its administrative rules further ODA’s mission, function within the regulated community, and do not overly burden business. To accomplish this, ODA works very closely with its regulated community and stakeholder groups in the rule making process.

When proposing new or amended rules, ODA sends the rules to its stakeholder groups to obtain input. ODA seeks involve stakeholder groups representative of the diverse interests of people most directly affected by the proposed rules. Once stakeholder review is complete, ODA will submit the rules to the Common Sense Initiative for review.

Below please find the rules, and their supporting documentation, that have been submitted to stakeholders for their review:

Animal Health – Livestock Marketing – OAC 901:1-23

The rules in Chapter 901:1-23 of the Ohio Administrative Code regulate the sale and marketing of porcine animals at livestock markets. More specifically, the rules establish requirements for pseudorabies testing in these animals.

Pseudorabies which is designated under section 901:1-21-02 of the Ohio Administrative Code (OAC) as dangerously contagious and infectious. Pursuant to authority in section 941.02 of the Ohio Revised Code, the Director of Agriculture has authority to use all proper means in the prevention and eradication of infectious and contagious diseases which pose a threat to public health or animal health. These rules are presented as no change rules. 

The federal government has proposed new rules regarding pseudorabies however; these rules have been in draft form for over two years. The rules in this Chapter are up for five year rule review. Once amended by the federal government, these rules will be re-reviewed.

On August 10, 2018, the rules were submitted to stakeholders. The stakeholder comment period ended on May 28, 2018, and the Department is reviewing the comments submitted.

Below please find a copy of the proposed rules:

Proposed Rules

Even though the stakeholder comment period has closed, please click here to submit comments.

Food Safety - Nutritional Labeling - OAC 901:3-1-(11 & 14)

OAC 901:3-1-11 is currently up for five-year rule review. This rule requires all food processing establishments to comply with the generally recognized labeling standards found in 21 CFR 101. The rule is being amended to comply with incorporation by reference standards. 

Pursuant to ORC 3717.53, the Department may adopt rules to regulate nutrition information for foods sold at food service operations. OAC 901:3-1-14 is a new rule in response to this charge. Specifically, the rule requires all food service operations to comply with the nutritional labeling standards as outlined in 21 CFR 101.11 and establishes a civil penalty structure for persons who fail to abide by these rules. The rule requires restaurants and similar retail food establishments that are part of a chain with 20 or more locations doing business under the same name and offering for sale substantially the same menu items to provide calorie and other nutrition information for standard menu items, including food on display and self-service food.

On July 16, 2019, the rules were submitted to stakeholders. The stakeholder comment period will remain open until August 2, 2019. 

Below please find a copy of the proposed rules:

Proposed Rules

If you are interested in submitting comments please click here.

Food Safety - Fish and Fishery Products - OAC 901:3-7-01

OAC 901:3-7-01 is proposed as being amended to allow non-profit organizations the ability to move fish or fishery products under their control to another establishment when then serve the food to the end consumer without charge. This is a change from the requirements in OAC 90:3-7 which would otherwise require these establishments to comply with seafood HACCP rules. The amendment makes this type of activity and entity exempt from these requirements. This rule does not exempt facilities from the general sanitation and cleanliness that all establishments are required to follow.

On July 16, 2019, the rules were submitted to stakeholders. The stakeholder comment period will remain open until August 2, 2019. 

Below please find a copy of the proposed rules:

Proposed Rules

If you are interested in submitting comments please click here.

Plant Health – Testing of Seeds – OAC 901:5-27

The rules of this chapter are up for five year rule review and regulate the methods of inspecting, sampling, analyzing, testing and examining agricultural, flower, and vegetable seed in the state. The rules have been reviewed by the Department and are being proposed as no-change rules save for a single amendment. OAC 901:5-27-02 is being amended to adopt the 2018 edition of "Rules for Testing Seed" as published by the Association of Official Seed Analysts. 

On July 15, 2018, the rules were submitted to stakeholders. The stakeholder comment period is open until July 26, 2019. 

Below please find a copy of the proposed rules:

Proposed Rules

Even though the stakeholder comment period has closed, please click here to submit comments.

Weights & Measures – Handbook 44 (2019 Update) – OAC 901:6-1-01

Rule 901:6-1-01 is being amended to update to the most current edition of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) Handbook 44. These changes are the result of an annual conference which has representatives from all fifty states and stakeholders in the weights and measures industry. All changes to the 2019 Handbook can be found in the document entitled, "2019 Handbook 44 Amendments." 

On November 1, 2018, the rules were submitted to stakeholders. The stakeholder comment period will remain open until November 16, 2018. 

Below please find a copy of the proposed rules:

Proposed Rules

2019 Handbook 44 Amendments

If you are interested in submitting comments please click here.

Public Comment Period and CSI Review

On January 10, 2011, Governor Kasich issued Executive Order 2011-01K which established the Common Sense Initiative.  As stated by Lt. Governor Mary Taylor, CSI was launched to reform Ohio’s regulatory policies to help make Ohio a jobs and business-friendly state. In order to meet the requirements of the CSI process, ODA shall review all rules that may have an adverse impact on business.

An adverse impact on business may result when a rule: requires a license, permit or prior authorization to engage in business; imposes a penalty or sanction for failure to comply with the rule; or requires specific expenditures or the report of information as a condition of compliance with the rule. ODA is required to conduct a business impact analysis (BIA) and submit the proposed rule and its BIA to CSI for review.

Upon submitting the rules to CSI, ODA simultaneously opens the rules for public comment. This invites interested members of the public to submit written comments to either ODA or CSI regarding the proposed rules during a specific period of time. ODA reviews all comments carefully and will make changes if deemed necessary.

Once CSI has completed its review of ODA’s proposed rule actions, ODA is provided with a recommendation that either suggests changes to the rules based on public comments or formally filing with the Joint Committee on Agency Rule Review. Below please find the rules, and their supporting documentation, that are open for public comment and have been sent to CSI for review:

Food Safety – Shellfish Rules – OAC 901:3-8

The rules in Chapter 901:3-8 of the Ohio Administrative Code have been reviewed by the Department pursuant to the Five-Year Rule Review. The rules in this chapter regulate the sanitary control of shellfish produced and sold for human consumption. The Department has reviewed the rules and have been amended to update code references in the rules.

On June 13, 2018, the rules were submitted to stakeholders. The Stakeholder comment period ended on June 29, 2018. The Department did not receive any comments on the proposed rules. On October 4, 2018, the rules were sent to CSI and opened for public comment. A public comment is open until October 19, 2018.

Below please find a copy of the proposed rules, business impact analysis, and request for public comment:

Proposed Rules

Business Impact Analysis

Request for Public Comment

If you are interested in submitting comments to the Department regarding this rule package please click here.

Hemp - Cultivation and Processing Rules - OAC 901:14-1 and 901:14-2

The Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018 (more commonly known as the 2018 Farm Bill) decriminalized hemp on a federal level paving the way for state Departments of agriculture to establish hemp cultivation programs across the county. Hemp is a cannabis plant, grown for its many industrial uses.  Unlike marijuana, hemp does not produce intoxicating effects.  Hemp yields a strong fiber, used in textiles.  The seed has nutritional value and can be eaten. Cannabinoids, including cannabidiol or CBD, can be extracted from the plant. Cannabinoids are now being used in food and dietary supplements.

On July 30, 2019, Governor DeWine signed into law Senate Bill 57 (SB 57) which decriminalized hemp on a state level. SB 57 requires the Ohio Department of Agriculture to adopt rules which establish federally compliant standards and procedures for the program. The rules in this package establish the standards and regulations for hemp cultivation and processing in the state.

Below please find a copy of the proposed rules, business impact analysis, and request for public comment:

Hemp Cultivation Rules

Hemp Processing Rules

Business Impact Analysis

Request for Public Comment

If you are interested in submitting comments to the Department regarding this rule package please click here .

Plant Health - Wood Destroying Insect Form - OAC 901:5-11-13

The rules in chapter 901:5-11 of the Administrative Code regulate pesticide application in the state of Ohio. These rules protect the citizens of Ohio by training and regulating pesticide applicators on proper pesticide use and application.

OAC 901:5-11-13 states recordkeeping requirements for wood-destroying insect diagnostic inspections. The rule specifically states how the NPMA-33 form is to be filled out by inspectors. The National Pest Management Association (NPMA) is a national, non-profit organization established in 1933 to support the pest management industry. Today,the United States Department of Housing and Urban Devolpment (HUD) requires that the NPMA-33 form be completed on all HUD or VA property transactions. The form has been the nationwide standard for wood destroying insect inspections. In December 2019, an updated NPMA-33 form is being released. The rule is being amended to update the instructions on how to complete the form.

On July 1, 2019, the rules were submitted to stakeholders. The Department received comments from the Ohio Pest Management Association approving the rules. On September 20, 2019, the rules were opened for public comment and sent to CSI. The public comment period will remain open until October 7, 2019. 

Below please find a copy of the proposed rules:

Proposed Rules

Business Impact Analysis

Request for Public Comment

Please click here to submit comments.

Plant Health – Raspberry and Strawberry Certification – OAC 901:5-39 & 41

OAC 901:5-39-01 and 901:5-41-01 has been reviewed in accordance with Chapter 119 of the Revised Code and is being proposed to be rescinded. Currently, the rule regulates and establishes the process for the certification of raspberry and strawberry plants, respectively. Certified raspberry and strawberry plants are those that have been inspected to ensure that the plants are free from disease and are of a pure variety. ODA has reviewed the rule and determined that it can be rescinded. ODA typically handles certification through other methods such as a compliance agreement. Further, the certification has not been utilized in a significant number of years.

On May 16, 2018, the rules were sent to stakeholders. The stakeholder comment period ended on June 6th. The Department did not receive any comments. On June 29, 2018, the rules were opened for public comment and sent to CSI. The public comment period was until July 20, 2018. No comments were made. ODA now awaits CSI’s report and recommendation.

Below please find a copy of the proposed rules, the business impact analysis, and the request for public comment: 

Proposed Rules

Business Impact Analysis

Request for Public Comment

Even though the public comment period has closed, please click here to submit comments.

Soil and Water – Notice and Elections – OAC 901:13-2&3

The rules in Chapters 901:13-2&3 of the Ohio Administrative Code outline the standards for meeting notices and elections to local Soil and Water Conservation Districts. These rules are up for five year rule review. This Chapter is up for five year rule review. The Department carefully reviewed the proposed rules and, with the conditional approval of the Ohio Soil and Water Conservation Commission, has proposed to amend these rules in order to clean up potential ambiguities, help with reader comprehension, and streamline the election process. 

On April 26, 2018, these rules were conditionally approved by the Ohio Soil and Water Conservation Commission. On April 27, 2018, the rules were submitted to stakeholders for their review. The Department received a number of comments from individual Soil and Water Conservation Districts. The Department amended the rules to allow the District's flexibility in scheduling an absentee voting period. The Department resubmitted the rules to the Districts on June 27, 2018 and required all comments to be submitted by July 12, 2018. 

On July 18, 2018, the rules were opened for public comment and submitted to CSI. The public comment period closed on August 6, 2018. ODA is now working to review the comments which were submitted.

Below please find a copy of the proposed rules, the business impact analysis, and the request for public comment: 

Proposed Rules

Business Impact Analysis

Request for Public Comment

Even though the public comment period has closed, please click here to submit comments.

Weights & Measures - Registered Servicepersons - OAC 901:6-8

Pursuant to House Bill 131 of the 131st General Assembly, all servicepersons employed by a commercially used weighing and measuring device servicing agency shall register with the Ohio Department of Agriculture. A serviceperson is any individual who installs, services, repairs, or reconditions, for hire, award, commission, or any other payment of kind, a commercial weighing or measuring device. The rules in this package have been proposed to fulfill this new requirement.

More specifically, the rules establish the application and examination process for servicepersons, recordkeeping requirements, testing requirements for weights and measures standards, and prohibitions regarding security seals. Additionally, the rules establish a voluntary registration for service agencies.

On June 21, 2018, the rules were submitted to stakeholders. The stakeholder comment period was open until July 11, 2018.  The Department received a small number of comments. The Department reviewed the comments and incorporated two of the three submissions. On July 16, 2018, the rules were opened for public comment and submitted to CSI. The public comment period was open until August 6, 2018. No comments were received. ODA now awaits CSI’s report and recommendation.

Below please find a copy of the proposed rules, the business impact analysis, and the request for public comment: 

Proposed Rules

Business Impact Analysis

Request for Public Comment

Even though the public comment period has closed, please click here to submit comments.

JCARR

The Joint Committee on Agency Rule Review (JCARR) is a legislative committee consisting of members from the Ohio Senate and Ohio House. The committee's main function is to ensure that state agencies do not exceed their statutory authority through administrative rule-making. The JCARR committee has the ability to recommend that a rule be invalidated if it does not meet one of the six criteria found on the JCARR website. For more information about JCARR call (614) 466-4086.

The rules listed below have been formally filed with JCARR. At the time of filing, a public hearing is scheduled to hear testimony on the proposed rules. These hearings are typically held at ODA. At the hearing any person affected by the proposed rules may appear, testify in person or through an attorney, or both, and may present his\her position either orally or in writing, offer and examine witnesses and present 5 evidence in support of or in opposition to the proposed rule. All comments submitted to ODA are carefully reviewed and ODA may revise the proposed rule as appropriate.

Below please find the rules, and their supporting documentation, that are currently within JCARR’s jurisdiction:

None.

Adopted Rules

Below please find the rules which have recently completed the rule making process and are now effective:

Administration - Livestock Funds - OAC 901-14-01

Pursuant to Ohio Revised Code 901.42, the Ohio Department of Agriculture shall adopt rules to establish procedures for the allocation of and distribution of financial assistance for livestock exhibitions at the Ohio exposition center. Ohio Administrative Code 901-14-01 sets forth these procedures. The rules are being proposed as not requiring amendment. 

There have been no funds appropriated to the Department for these claims in several years. However, due to the continued existence of Revised Code section 901.42, the Department is required to maintain these administrative rules.

Final Rules

Amusement Ride Safety – Bungee Jumps – OAC 901:9-1-(21-41)

The Ohio Department of Agriculture, Division of Amusement Ride Safety inspects all amusement rides, including bungee jump amusement rides, that operate in the state of Ohio. The Department’s inspectors work to assure compliance with Ohio’s laws and rules and to ensure that rides are have been assembled and are being operated in a safe manner. 

The rules in this package regulate bungee jump amusement rides in the state. These rules are up for five-year rule review. The Department has reviewed and made minor changes to these rules. Specifically, OAC 901:9-1-21 was amended to incorporate definitions ANSI and ASTM in order to comply with the incorporation by reference rules. Further, rules were amended to ensure that defined terms were used correctly throughout the rules. Finally, ANSI and ASTM references were updated to reflect the more current and correct version of these standards. 

Below please find the final rules: 

Final Rules

Animal Health – Dangerous Wild Animal Review – OAC 901:1-4

On September 5, 2012, Senate Bill 310 of the 129th General Assembly became effective. Senate Bill 310 was more commonly referred to as the Dangerous Wild Animal and Restricted Snake Act which regulated the possession of dangerous wild animals and restricted snakes in the state of Ohio. Chapter 901:1-4 of the Administrative Code was established pursuant to SB 310.
 
The rules in this chapter set forth regulatory requirements to protect the public from the dangers posed by the possession of dangerous wild animals and restricted snakes, as well as to ensure the care for these animals.  The protection includes mandating the use of safe housing, ensuring owners have the requisite knowledge to care for the animals, appropriate recordkeeping, and adequate sanitary conditions to prevent the spread of disease and infection. 

ODA is proposing to make small, clarifying changes which should help with compliance and comprehension. For example, OAC 901:1-4-01.1 is proposed to amend the meaning of cantilever fencing to include an additional option of “at least two high tension cables with a separate electrified top wire. If used, these cables must be evenly spaced to prevent escape.” OAC 901:1-4-09 is proposed to be amended to clarify that several non-human primate species may have perimeter fencing on either side of the vertical posts. Recordkeeping changes have been proposed to OAC 901:1-4-10. Specifically, all records required to be kept by ORC 935.15(A) shall be submitted to ODA within thirty days. Finally, a new rule has been proposed which governs the application process for restricted snakes.

Final Rules

Animal Health - Scrapie - OAC 901:1-13

The rules in Chapter 901:1-13 of the Ohio Administrative Code have been reviewed by the Department pursuant to the Five-Year Rule Review. OAC 901:1-13 regulates the disease known as Scrapie which is designated under OAC 901:1-21-02 as a dangerously contagious or infectious disease. Pursuant to authority in section 941.02 of the Ohio Revised Code, the Director of Agriculture has authority to use all proper means in the prevention and eradication of infectious and contagious diseases which pose a threat to public health or animal health. 

These rules are modeled from the United States Department of Agriculture's National Scrapie Eradication program. On September 10, 2015, USDA published a proposed rule in the Federal Register to amend the regulations for this program.  The comment period closed December 9, 2015.  The Final Rule is being drafted. USDA believes the update to the program will result in a more effective disease eradication program, with a more flexible approach to disease investigations and affected flock management and more consistent animal identification and recordkeeping requirements. Due to the pending rule changes on the federal level, ODA has yet to file these rules, however to comply with five-year rule review requirements, ODA has proposed to file these rules as no-change rules. OAC 901:1-13-03 has been amended to update a reference to an outdated USDA policy document.

Below please find the final rules:

Proposed Rules

​Meat Inspection - Five Year Rule Review - OAC 901:2-1; 901:2-3; 901:2-6; and 901:2-7

The rules in this package adopt and amend the federal meat inspection regulations of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) pursuant to the Federal Meat Inspection Act, the Wholesome Meat Act, and the Livestock Slaughter Act. Pursuant to 918.04 of the Ohio Revised Code, the Ohio Department of Agriculture (Department) shall adopt rules which meet or exceed the federal requirements for meat inspection. The rules set forth in this package update the rules to meet the 2018 federal meat inspection requirements as well as clarify the existing portions of the law to ensure that all interested parties are able to read, understand, and follow the laws. 

Currently, the Department maintains four chapters of Administrative Code rules regarding meat inspection. OAC Chapter 901:2-1 regulates the intrastate production of red meat. OAC Chapter 901:2-3 regulates the intrastate production of poultry products. OAC Chapter 901:2-6 regulates the interstate production of red meat. OAC Chapter 901:2-7 regulates the interstate production of poultry products. 

As a part of the five-year rule review process, the Department elected to combine the interstate and intrastate chapters. This will allow the regulated community to rely on one chapter of rules rather than two. Due to this change, OAC Chapters 901:2-6 and 901:2-7 are proposed to be rescinded. The applicable provisions have been included in 901:2-1 and 901:2-3, respectively. In addition, minor substantive changes have been made to OAC Chapters 901:2-1 and 901:2-3. 

Below please find the final rules:

OAC Chapter 901:2-1 Red Meat

OAC Chapter 901:2-3 Poultry

OAC Chapter 901:2-6 Rescinded Red Meat Rules

OAC Chapter 901:2-7 Rescinded Poultry Rules

Plant Health – Raspberry and Strawberry Certification – OAC 901:5-39 & 41

OAC 901:5-39-01 and 901:5-41-01 has been reviewed in accordance with Chapter 119 of the Revised Code and is being proposed to be rescinded. Currently, the rule regulates and establishes the process for the certification of raspberry and strawberry plants, respectively. Certified raspberry and strawberry plants are those that have been inspected to ensure that the plants are free from disease and are of a pure variety. ODA has reviewed the rule and determined that it can be rescinded. ODA typically handles certification through other methods such as a compliance agreement. Further, the certification has not been utilized in a significant number of years.

Below please find the final rules: 

Final Rules

Plant Health – Harmful Plant Pests – OAC 901:5-42-01

OAC 901:5-42-01 establishes a list of animal species which have been designated as destructive or dangerously harmful plant pests. The list of animals is limited to: racoon dogs, monk parakeets, and blacktail prarie dogs. According to ORC 927.70, no person shall permit any plant pest to exist in or on the person's premises unless otherwise permitted by rule. The rule has been reviewed by the Department and is presented with amendments which should allow for easier comprehension.

Below please find the final rules: 

Final Rules