Agricultural Board Expansion

Messrs. Rodrigues, Michael O. Moore and Tarr, Ms. Lovely and Mr. Montigny moved that the bill be amended by inserting the following section:-

“SECTION __. Chapter 20 of the General Laws is hereby amended by striking out section 1, as appearing in the 2012 Official Edition, and inserting in place thereof the following section:-

Section 1. There shall be a department of agricultural resources under the supervision and control of a board of agriculture, hereinafter called the board. The board shall consist of 13 members, to be appointed by the governor, who shall be from diverse geographic regions of the commonwealth and shall represent diverse agricultural operations within the commonwealth.

At least 9 members of the board shall be farmers whose principal vocation is the production of food and fiber. Members shall be appointed for a term of 3 years, with no member serving more than 2 consecutive terms.

The board shall meet not less than 6 times a year or at the call of the chairman and at such times as shall be determined by its rules or at the request of the commissioner or the call of any 3 members. The chairman shall be annually appointed by a majority of said board present and voting thereon. Board members shall receive $50 for each day or portion thereof spent in the discharge of their official duties not to exceed $600 per year and shall be reimbursed for the travel to and from official board meetings and other expenses necessary to conduct such meetings.

There shall be a commissioner of agricultural resources who shall be appointed and may be removed by the secretary of environmental affairs with the approval of the governor. Said commissioner shall have charge of the administration of the department. The department may expend for traveling expenses of its employees incurred in the performance of their official duties and for other necessary expenses of the department, such sums as may be appropriated.”.