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Guest opinion: Nebraska Cattlemen seeks sweeping brand law changes

Clint Andersen, Sheridan County Journal Star reporter

The Nebraska Cattlemen met at their annual convention in Kearney Dec. 7-9 and passed several resolutions that would shift increasing inspection fees from feedlots and packers to cow-calf producers, while making it easier for lost or stolen cattle to be moved and sold. These resolutions would remove brand inspection requirements at large feedlots and packing plants and create a self-certification program allowing individuals to write their own brand papers.

The first in a series of resolutions paves the way for increasing fees for brand recording, brand assessment and brand transfers. The Nebraska Brand Committee – the state’s governing body for brand issues – recently achieved passage of legislation, LB 181, allowing them to collect up to a $20 surcharge to cover travel expenses incurred by brand inspectors. The Nebraska Cattlemen’s resolution calls for an increase in brand fees over and above the surcharge. These new fees would increase the cost of nearly everything associated with how brands are recorded and transferred.

As part of the resolution on fee increases, the Cattlemen would allow producers not living in the brand inspection area to sit on the state’s brand governing body – the Nebraska Brand Committee.



A third resolution would exempt large registered feedlots from brand inspection fees altogether with only quarterly audits of ownership documents (if available) for cattle in these feedlots. These audits would be provided by the Brand Committee at cost. Exempting these large feedlots would eliminate nearly 15 percent of the Brand Committee’s yearly receipts.

The fourth resolution seeks to exempt any cattle under 30 months of age from outside the brand area shipped to a packing facility inside the brand area. This would allow uninspected cattle to be harvested without any proof of ownership.



The Cattlemen would also like to see an expanded “Bill of Sale” program that would allow registered and non-registered seedstock to be sold without a brand inspection. These cattle would carry a bill of sale with copies given to the buyer, seller and brand commission. An inspection fee and beef checkoff funds would be submitted voluntarily.

The sixth resolution provides for a self-certification program to be established that allows producers to transfer title on 15 or fewer cattle without an inspector present. Again, copies would be provided to the buyer, seller and Brand Committee. This would be accomplished by giving each producer a book of forms to generate proof of ownership documents giving them legal title to any animals in their possession.

The final resolution seeks to expand the grazing permit program to allow more freedom of movement of cattle across the brand inspection line when no change of ownership occurs. This would make it easier for producers who graze in counties both in and out of the brand area to move cattle without the need to be inspected each time they are moved.

The Nebraska Cattlemen met at their annual convention in Kearney Dec. 7-9 and passed several resolutions that would shift increasing inspection fees from feedlots and packers to cow-calf producers, while making it easier for lost or stolen cattle to be moved and sold. These resolutions would remove brand inspection requirements at large feedlots and packing plants and create a self-certification program allowing individuals to write their own brand papers.

The first in a series of resolutions paves the way for increasing fees for brand recording, brand assessment and brand transfers. The Nebraska Brand Committee – the state’s governing body for brand issues – recently achieved passage of legislation, LB 181, allowing them to collect up to a $20 surcharge to cover travel expenses incurred by brand inspectors. The Nebraska Cattlemen’s resolution calls for an increase in brand fees over and above the surcharge. These new fees would increase the cost of nearly everything associated with how brands are recorded and transferred.

As part of the resolution on fee increases, the Cattlemen would allow producers not living in the brand inspection area to sit on the state’s brand governing body – the Nebraska Brand Committee.

A third resolution would exempt large registered feedlots from brand inspection fees altogether with only quarterly audits of ownership documents (if available) for cattle in these feedlots. These audits would be provided by the Brand Committee at cost. Exempting these large feedlots would eliminate nearly 15 percent of the Brand Committee’s yearly receipts.

The fourth resolution seeks to exempt any cattle under 30 months of age from outside the brand area shipped to a packing facility inside the brand area. This would allow uninspected cattle to be harvested without any proof of ownership.

The Cattlemen would also like to see an expanded “Bill of Sale” program that would allow registered and non-registered seedstock to be sold without a brand inspection. These cattle would carry a bill of sale with copies given to the buyer, seller and brand commission. An inspection fee and beef checkoff funds would be submitted voluntarily.

The sixth resolution provides for a self-certification program to be established that allows producers to transfer title on 15 or fewer cattle without an inspector present. Again, copies would be provided to the buyer, seller and Brand Committee. This would be accomplished by giving each producer a book of forms to generate proof of ownership documents giving them legal title to any animals in their possession.

The final resolution seeks to expand the grazing permit program to allow more freedom of movement of cattle across the brand inspection line when no change of ownership occurs. This would make it easier for producers who graze in counties both in and out of the brand area to move cattle without the need to be inspected each time they are moved.

The Nebraska Cattlemen met at their annual convention in Kearney Dec. 7-9 and passed several resolutions that would shift increasing inspection fees from feedlots and packers to cow-calf producers, while making it easier for lost or stolen cattle to be moved and sold. These resolutions would remove brand inspection requirements at large feedlots and packing plants and create a self-certification program allowing individuals to write their own brand papers.

The first in a series of resolutions paves the way for increasing fees for brand recording, brand assessment and brand transfers. The Nebraska Brand Committee – the state’s governing body for brand issues – recently achieved passage of legislation, LB 181, allowing them to collect up to a $20 surcharge to cover travel expenses incurred by brand inspectors. The Nebraska Cattlemen’s resolution calls for an increase in brand fees over and above the surcharge. These new fees would increase the cost of nearly everything associated with how brands are recorded and transferred.

As part of the resolution on fee increases, the Cattlemen would allow producers not living in the brand inspection area to sit on the state’s brand governing body – the Nebraska Brand Committee.

A third resolution would exempt large registered feedlots from brand inspection fees altogether with only quarterly audits of ownership documents (if available) for cattle in these feedlots. These audits would be provided by the Brand Committee at cost. Exempting these large feedlots would eliminate nearly 15 percent of the Brand Committee’s yearly receipts.

The fourth resolution seeks to exempt any cattle under 30 months of age from outside the brand area shipped to a packing facility inside the brand area. This would allow uninspected cattle to be harvested without any proof of ownership.

The Cattlemen would also like to see an expanded “Bill of Sale” program that would allow registered and non-registered seedstock to be sold without a brand inspection. These cattle would carry a bill of sale with copies given to the buyer, seller and brand commission. An inspection fee and beef checkoff funds would be submitted voluntarily.

The sixth resolution provides for a self-certification program to be established that allows producers to transfer title on 15 or fewer cattle without an inspector present. Again, copies would be provided to the buyer, seller and Brand Committee. This would be accomplished by giving each producer a book of forms to generate proof of ownership documents giving them legal title to any animals in their possession.

The final resolution seeks to expand the grazing permit program to allow more freedom of movement of cattle across the brand inspection line when no change of ownership occurs. This would make it easier for producers who graze in counties both in and out of the brand area to move cattle without the need to be inspected each time they are moved.

The Nebraska Cattlemen met at their annual convention in Kearney Dec. 7-9 and passed several resolutions that would shift increasing inspection fees from feedlots and packers to cow-calf producers, while making it easier for lost or stolen cattle to be moved and sold. These resolutions would remove brand inspection requirements at large feedlots and packing plants and create a self-certification program allowing individuals to write their own brand papers.

The first in a series of resolutions paves the way for increasing fees for brand recording, brand assessment and brand transfers. The Nebraska Brand Committee – the state’s governing body for brand issues – recently achieved passage of legislation, LB 181, allowing them to collect up to a $20 surcharge to cover travel expenses incurred by brand inspectors. The Nebraska Cattlemen’s resolution calls for an increase in brand fees over and above the surcharge. These new fees would increase the cost of nearly everything associated with how brands are recorded and transferred.

As part of the resolution on fee increases, the Cattlemen would allow producers not living in the brand inspection area to sit on the state’s brand governing body – the Nebraska Brand Committee.

A third resolution would exempt large registered feedlots from brand inspection fees altogether with only quarterly audits of ownership documents (if available) for cattle in these feedlots. These audits would be provided by the Brand Committee at cost. Exempting these large feedlots would eliminate nearly 15 percent of the Brand Committee’s yearly receipts.

The fourth resolution seeks to exempt any cattle under 30 months of age from outside the brand area shipped to a packing facility inside the brand area. This would allow uninspected cattle to be harvested without any proof of ownership.

The Cattlemen would also like to see an expanded “Bill of Sale” program that would allow registered and non-registered seedstock to be sold without a brand inspection. These cattle would carry a bill of sale with copies given to the buyer, seller and brand commission. An inspection fee and beef checkoff funds would be submitted voluntarily.

The sixth resolution provides for a self-certification program to be established that allows producers to transfer title on 15 or fewer cattle without an inspector present. Again, copies would be provided to the buyer, seller and Brand Committee. This would be accomplished by giving each producer a book of forms to generate proof of ownership documents giving them legal title to any animals in their possession.

The final resolution seeks to expand the grazing permit program to allow more freedom of movement of cattle across the brand inspection line when no change of ownership occurs. This would make it easier for producers who graze in counties both in and out of the brand area to move cattle without the need to be inspected each time they are moved.


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