54-1,108. Physical inspections; when required; surcharge; fees; mileage; electronic inspection; when permitted; fees; procedures; report; reinspection; when.

(1)(a) All physical inspections for brands provided for in the Livestock Brand Act or section 54-415 shall be from sunrise to sundown or during such other hours and under such conditions as the Nebraska Brand Committee determines. The brand committee shall assess a fifty-dollar late notice surcharge if a request for a physical inspection is made less than forty-eight hours prior to the date of inspection.

(b) A physical inspection shall be required when brands applied by hot iron or freeze branding methods are the exclusive means of ownership identification and in all other cases that do not qualify for electronic inspection as provided in subsection (2) of this section.

(c) Beginning October 1, 2021, a physical inspection fee of eighty-five cents per head until June 30, 2023, and beginning July 1, 2023, a fee established by the Nebraska Brand Committee, of not more than one dollar and ten cents per head shall be charged for all cattle inspected in accordance with the Livestock Brand Act or section 54-415, inspected within the brand inspection area or brand inspection service area by court order, inspected at the request of any bank, credit agency, or lending institution with a legal or financial interest in such cattle, or inspected at the request of a neighboring livestock owner with missing cattle. The inspection fee for court-ordered inspections shall be paid from the proceeds of the sale of such cattle if ordered by the court or by either party as the court directs. For other inspections, the person requesting the inspection of such cattle is responsible for the inspection fee. Brand inspections requested by either a purchaser or seller of cattle located within the brand inspection service area shall be provided upon the same terms and charges as brand inspections performed within the brand inspection area. If estray cattle are identified as a result of the inspection, such cattle shall be processed in the manner provided by section 54-415.

(d) The actual mileage incurred by the inspector to perform a physical inspection shall be paid by the party requesting inspection and paid at the rate established by the Department of Administrative Services pursuant to section 81-1176.

(e) For physical inspections performed outside of the brand inspection area that are not provided for in subdivision (c) of this subsection, the fee shall be the inspection fee established in such subdivision plus a fee to cover the actual expense of performing the inspection, including mileage at the rate established by the Department of Administrative Services and an hourly rate, not to exceed thirty dollars per hour, for the travel and inspection time incurred by the brand committee to perform such inspection. The brand committee shall charge and collect the actual expense fee. Such fee shall apply to inspections performed outside the brand inspection area as part of an investigation into known or alleged violations of the Livestock Brand Act and shall be charged against the person committing the violation.

(2)(a) The brand committee may provide for electronic inspection of enrolled cattle identified by approved nonvisual identifiers pursuant to subsection (5) of section 54-199. The brand committee shall establish procedures for enrollment of such cattle with the brand committee which shall include providing acceptable certification or evidence of ownership. Electronic inspection shall not require agency employees to be present, except that random audits shall occur.

(b) Beginning October 1, 2021, an electronic inspection fee not to exceed eighty-five cents per head until June 30, 2023, and beginning July 1, 2023, a fee established by the brand committee of not more than one dollar and ten cents per head shall be charged for all cattle subjected to electronic inspection in accordance with the Livestock Brand Act or section 54-415.

(c) A certified bill of sale for sale of calves shall be provided to qualified dairies once the required information is electronically transferred to the brand committee on calves under thirty days of age. The fee shall be the same as for an electronic inspection under subdivision (2)(b) of this section.

(d) A certified transportation permit shall be provided to qualified dairies after the required information is electronically transferred to the brand committee on calves under thirty days of age which are moved out of the inspection area. The fee shall be the same as for an electronic inspection under subdivision (2)(b) of this section.

(e) On or before December 1, 2021, the brand committee shall report to the Legislature any actions taken or necessary for implementing electronic inspection authorized by this subsection, including personnel and other resources utilized to support electronic inspection, how the brand committee's information technology capabilities are utilized to support electronic inspection, a listing of approved nonvisual identifiers, the requirements for enrolling cattle identified by approved nonvisual identifiers, current and anticipated utilization of electronic inspection by the livestock industry, and the fees required to recover costs of performing electronic inspection.

(3) Any person who has reason to believe that cattle were shipped erroneously due to an inspection error during a brand inspection may request a reinspection. The person making such request shall be responsible for the expenses incurred as a result of the reinspection unless the results of the reinspection substantiate the claim of inspection error, in which case the brand committee shall be responsible for the reinspection expenses.

Source:Laws 1999, LB 778, § 39; Laws 2002, LB 589, § 7; Laws 2005, LB 441, § 2; Laws 2011, LB181, § 1; Laws 2014, LB768, § 5; Laws 2015, LB85, § 1; Laws 2021, LB572, § 21.
Effective Date: August 28, 2021