S.D. Attorney General Marty Jackley supports brand inspection legislation
January 20, 2014
South Dakota Attorney General Marty Jackley is behind Senate Bill 22, an effort to enhance responsibilities and authority of current law enforcement officers to include the ability to ticket violators of brand inspection laws. Highway patrol, local sheriffs, DCI and other with law enforcement authority would be able to write present paperwork, similar to a speeding ticket, for alleged misdemeanor violations such as leaving the brand area without an inspection. He had this to say about the bill:
"The proposed legislation seeks a more practical and balanced approach to addressing potential brand law violations. The legislation would authorize law enforcement to issue a summons, similar to a traffic citation, for misdemeanor violations of the livestock ownership inspection laws," said Jackley. When officers discover misdemeanor violations of ownership inspection laws, current law gives the officer two choices. The officer can take that person into custody, but since there are often loaded livestock involved, taking the violator into custody may well create unnecessary hardship on the individual and additional taxpayer expenses. The alternative is to gather the information on the violation, let the potential violator go, and take the evidence of the violation to a prosecutor for preparation of a summons or arrest warrant to be served on the violator. The proposed legislation authorizes the officer a third option to issue a ticket, and is modeled on existing statutes authorizing tickets for violations of Title 32 (Motor Vehicles) and Title 41 (Game, Fish, Parks and Forestry). The potential violator then can either pay the ticket or has the right to challenge the citation requiring the offense to be proven beyond a reasonable doubt.
Jackley also confirmed that the attorney who had recently represented the ag department and the brand board is no longer employed in that capacity and that his office is handling any pertinent legal matters.
“The proposed legislation seeks a more practical and balanced approach to addressing potential brand law violations.”