Ohio State to host Ag Law Symposium

COLUMBUS — From shale gas legal issues to enforcing the state’s new Livestock Care Standards to federal and state agricultural legislation, the Nov. 18 Ohio Agricultural Law Symposium is packed with hot topics in the legal community.

Organizer Peggy Hall, director of Ohio State University Extension’s Agricultural and Resource Law program, said the fourth annual program could well be the best one yet.

The symposium, at the Ohio Union at 1739 N. High St., runs from 9 a.m. to 4:15 p.m., with registration beginning at 8:30 a.m.

Register

Preregistration, available at www.ohiobar.org, is $260 for Ohio State Bar Association members or $325 for nonmembers, with six continuing legal education credits. Non-CLE rates are available; call the Bar Association at 800-232-2174 for more information.

Scholarships

Also, student scholarships are available through Ohio State’s Paul L. Wright Chair Fund in Agricultural Law. For information, contact Hall at 614-247-7898 or aglaw@osu.edu.

Sessions

Sessions include:

• Chesapeake Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL): EPA’s New Framework for Watershed Regulation, Danielle Quist, senior counsel for public policy, American Farm Bureau Federation, Washington, D.C.

The U.S. EPA has established a regulatory regime for the Chesapeake Bay watershed that sets a TMDL for sediments and nutrients such as nitrogen and phosphorous and mandates state implementation of that TMDL.

The American Farm Bureau and other organizations have filed a lawsuit against the watershed rule. Quist will discuss the basis for the lawsuit and potential implications for environmental regulations and agriculture.

• Nutrient-Enriched Lakes, Livestock Emissions and Other Hot Environmental Topics for Ohio Agriculture, Jack Van Kley, Van Kley and Walker LLC, Columbus.

Van Kley will lead a discussion of current environmental issues for Ohio agriculture, from the Grand Lake St. Marys algae situation to the status of EPA’s regulation of air emissions on livestock farms.

• Enforcing Ohio’s New Livestock Care Standards, James Patterson, assistant attorney general, Ohio.

Ohio’s new Livestock Care Standards became effective Sept. 29. Hear from the Ohio Attorney General’s office about how the agency will enforce the new standards.

• The Office of Inspector General Audit: Preventing and Detecting Waste, Fraud and Abuse, Diana Blust, senior auditor, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Office of the Inspector General.

Blust will explain the federal audit process and share thoughts, recommendations and experiences on agricultural program audit issues.

• Current Issues in Current Agricultural Use Valuation, Larry Gearhardt, Ohio Farm Bureau Federation, Columbus.

Recent years have brought significant changes in Ohio’s CAUV formula and the determination of farmland property taxes. Gearhardt will explain the CAUV process and discuss current problems and challenges to CAUV determinations.

• Representing Landowners in Oil and Gas Leases and Dormant Minerals Claims (concurrent session), Richard A. Yoss, Yoss Law Office, Woodsfield.

Shale gas development is in a boom cycle in Ohio, bringing new leasing and mineral issues for Ohio farmers. This session will review leasing provisions that address the landowner’s interests and discuss how the Ohio Dormant Mineral Act addresses uncertainty over severed minerals.

• Estate Planning for Farmers in an Era of New Laws and New Wealth (concurrent session), Beatrice Wolper, Emens & Wolper Law Firm, Columbus; Paul L. Wright, Wright Law Co., LPA, Dublin.

Ohio farmers are gaining new wealth from nonfarm income such as wind and oil and gas leases, while state and federal estate tax laws are undergoing major revisions. Two estate planning experts will present ideas on how to manage clients’ new wealth and counsel clients under new estate tax laws.

• Fighting for Agriculture in Washington: The Farm Bill and other Farm Policy Issues, Dale W. Moore, vice president, Policy Directions, Inc., Washington, D.C.

Moore is a D.C. veteran who has worked on federal farm policy issues for 25 years. He’ll share his insights into the future direction of the farm bill and other federal policies that impact agriculture.

• Legislative Outlook for Ohio Agriculture, Sen. Cliff Hite, chair, Ohio Senate’s Agriculture, Environment and Natural Resources Committee.

Hite will present an update on current agricultural issues in the Ohio legislature.

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