DES MOINES--Thursday Rep. Dan Huseman (R-Aurelia) supported a bill to protect Iowa's livestock and crop producers.
House File 589 addresses concerns of biosecurity of Iowa's animal industry and the well-being of animals. The bill protects livestock and crop operations against unauthorized destruction, killing or injuring of stock, or disruption of agricultural or biotechnical operations on an owner's premise.
Additionally, it makes it unlawful to produce, possess, or distribute an unauthorized recording (sound or image) at an animal or crop operation.
Finally, this measure creates a fraud provision to address situations where access to an animal or crop facility are granted by the owner or keeper of the facility on the basis of falsehoods or deceptions that hide the true intent of the person seeking access.
"It's important to protect the safety of Iowa's livestock and food sources as well as empower people to report the abuse of animals," said Huseman.
This bill does not seek to protect operators who mistreat or neglect their animals, but rather promotes reporting these instances through the proper channels as defined in Iowa law. These channels involve reporting concerns to local, state, or federal authorities which then allows trained investigators to come to the facility unannounced during normal business hours to conduct an investigation that is biologically safe.
The bill passed the House, 66 to 27 with overwhelmingly bipartisan support. It is now sent to the Senate for the consideration.