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Chapter 19     Entire Code


ARTICLE 1. DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE.

ARTICLE 1A. DIVISION OF FORESTRY.

ARTICLE 1B. SEDIMENT CONTROL DURING COMMERCIAL TIMBER HARVESTING OPERATIONS.

ARTICLE 1C. CARE OF LIVESTOCK.

ARTICLE 2. MARKETING AGRICULTURAL PRODUCTS.

ARTICLE 2A. PUBLIC MARKETS.

ARTICLE 2B. INSPECTION OF MEAT AND POULTRY.

ARTICLE 2C. AUCTIONEERS.

ARTICLE 2D. IMITATION HONEY PRODUCT LAW.

ARTICLE 2E. HUMANE SLAUGHTER OF LIVESTOCK.

ARTICLE 2F. BEEF INDUSTRY SELF-IMPROVEMENT ASSESSMENT PROGRAM.

ARTICLE 2G. TREE FRUIT INDUSTRY SELF-IMPROVEMENT BOARD.

ARTICLE 2H. CAPTIVE CERVID FARMING ACT.

ARTICLE 3. SALE OF FARM PRODUCTS BY COMMISSION MERCHANTS.

ARTICLE 4. COOPERATIVE ASSOCIATIONS.

ARTICLE 5. GRADING AND PACKING OF FRUITS AND VEGETABLES.

ARTICLE 5A. CONTROLLED ATMOSPHERE STORAGE OF FRESH FRUITS AND VEGETABLES.

ARTICLE 6. DEMONSTRATION PACKINGHOUSES AND SIMILAR PLANTS.

ARTICLE 7. STATE AID FOR FAIRS.

ARTICLE 8. COOPERATIVE EXTENSION WORKERS.

ARTICLE 9. DISEASES AMONG DOMESTIC ANIMALS.

ARTICLE 9A. FEEDING OF UNTREATED GARBAGE TO SWINE.

ARTICLE 10. MALE BREEDING ANIMALS.

ARTICLE 10A. THE WEST VIRGINIA EGG MARKETING LAW OF 1998.

ARTICLE 10B. LIVESTOCK DEALER\'S LICENSING ACT.

ARTICLE 11. BULK MILK TRADE LAW.

ARTICLE 11A. DAIRY PRODUCTS AND IMITATION DAIRY PRODUCTS LAW.

ARTICLE 11B. FROZEN DESSERTS AND IMITATION FROZEN DESSERTS LAW.

ARTICLE 11C. SOUTHERN DAIRY COMPACT.

ARTICLE 11D. TRADITIONAL CHEESE PRODUCTION.

ARTICLE 11E. Milk and milk products.

ARTICLE 12. INSECT PESTS, PLANT DISEASES AND NOXIOUS WEEDS.

ARTICLE 12A. LAND DIVISION.

ARTICLE 12B. INTERSTATE COMPACT ON PEST CONTROL.

ARTICLE 12C. INTERAGENCY COMMITTEE ON PESTICIDES.

ARTICLE 12D. WEST VIRGINIA NOXIOUS WEED ACT.

ARTICLE 12E. INDUSTRIAL HEMP DEVELOPMENT ACT.

ARTICLE 13. INSPECTION AND PROTECTION OF AGRICULTURE.

ARTICLE 14. WEST VIRGINIA COMMERCIAL FEED LAW.

ARTICLE 15. WEST VIRGINIA FERTILIZER LAW.

ARTICLE 15A. WEST VIRGINIA AGRICULTURAL LIMING MATERIALS LAW.

ARTICLE 16. WEST VIRGINIA SEED LAW.

ARTICLE 16A. WEST VIRGINIA PESTICIDE CONTROL ACT.

ARTICLE 16B. WEST VIRGINIA PESTICIDE USE AND APPLICATION ACT.

ARTICLE 17. FENCES.

ARTICLE 18. GENERAL STOCK LAW.

ARTICLE 19. PRESERVATION OF AGRICULTURAL PRODUCTION.

ARTICLE 20. DOGS AND CATS.

ARTICLE 20A. VACCINATION OF DOGS AND CATS FOR RABIES.

ARTICLE 20B. SPAYING OR NEUTERING OF DOGS AND CATS.

ARTICLE 20C. WEST VIRGINIA SPAY NEUTER ASSISTANCE PROGRAM.

ARTICLE 20D. PRIVATE CAUSE OF ACTION FOR THE HUMANE DESTRUCTION OF A DOG.

ARTICLE 21. DRAINAGE DISTRICTS.

ARTICLE 21A. CONSERVATION DISTRICTS.

ARTICLE 21B. WATERSHED IMPROVEMENT DISTRICTS.

ARTICLE 22. VINEGARS.

ARTICLE 23. HORSE AND DOG RACING.

ARTICLE 24. INTERSTATE COMPACT ON LICENSURE OF PARTICIPANTS IN LIVE HORSE RACING WITH PARI-MUTUEL WAGERING.

ARTICLE 25. LIMITING LIABILITY OF LANDOWNERS.

ARTICLE 26. GENERAL JOHN MCCAUSLAND MEMORIAL FARM.

ARTICLE 27. WEST VIRGINIA STATE FARM MUSEUM.

ARTICLE 28. VITAMIN AND MINERAL ENRICHMENT OF FLOUR AND BREAD.

ARTICLE 29. PRODUCTION OF NONTRADITIONAL AGRICULTURE PRODUCTS.

ARTICLE 30. DONATED FOOD.

ARTICLE 31. GUS R. DOUGLASS AGRICULTURAL CENTER AT GUTHRIE.

ARTICLE 32. AQUACULTURE DEVELOPMENT.

ARTICLE 33. EQUINE RESCUE FACILITIES ACT.

ARTICLE 34. DANGEROUS WILD ANIMALS ACT.

ARTICLE 35. FARMERS MARKETS.

ARTICLE 37. West VIRGINIA FRESH FOOD ACT.

ARTICLE 36. AGRITOURISM RESPONSIBILITY ACT.

§19-36-1. Legislative purposes; authority.

Every year, in rapidly increasing numbers, residents and nonresidents of the State of West Virginia are enjoying the recreational value of the state’s many agritourism venues. The tourist trade is of vital importance to the State of West Virginia and the services offered by agritourism significantly contribute to the revenue enterprise and economic development of the state. The Legislature recognizes that there are inherent risks in the recreational activities provided by agritourism which should be understood by each participant. It is essentially impossible for agritourism to eliminate these risks. It is the purpose of this article to define those areas of responsibility and affirmative acts for which agritourism is liable for loss, damage, or injury.

The Commissioner of Agriculture is hereby authorized to, and shall devise means of, advancing agritourism in the state, and in the performance of such duty, he or she shall have the authority to call upon any department, division, or officer of the state or county to cooperate with him or her in promoting agritourism in the state.

The Commissioner of Agriculture, in consultation with the Secretary of Commerce, shall promulgate rules in accordance with chapter 29A of this code for the promotion, marketing, and regulation of agritourism business.

§19-36-2. Definitions.

Unless the context of usage clearly requires otherwise:

“Agritourism” activity means any lawful activity carried out on a farm or ranch that allows members of the general public for recreational, entertainment, or educational purposes to view or enjoy rural activities.

“Agritourism business” means any person, fiduciary, firm, association, partnership, limited liability company, corporation, unit of government, or any other group or entity which is engaged in the business of providing one or more agritourism activities, whether or not for compensation.

“Agritourism professional” means owners, operators, employees, and volunteers working for or under the direction of the operators of an agritourism business.

“Farm” or “ranch” means an area of land used for the production, cultivation, growing, harvesting, or processing of agricultural products.

“Inherent risks of agritourism activity” are those dangers or conditions that are part of an agritourism activity including certain hazards, natural conditions of land and terrain, vegetation, and waters, the behavior of wild or domestic animals, and ordinary dangers of structures or equipment ordinarily used in farming and ranching operations. Inherent risks of agritourism activity also include the potential of a participant to act in a negligent manner that may contribute to injury to the participant or others, including failing to follow instructions given by the agritourism professional or failing to exercise reasonable caution while engaging in the agritourism activity.

“Participant” as used in this article means any person, other than the agritourism professional, who engages in an agritourism activity.

§19-36-3. Duties of agritourism businesses and participants.

(a) An agritourism business, or agritourism business employee or volunteer acting under the direction of the agritourism business operator, is not liable for injury or death of a participant, or loss or damage to a participant’s property, as the result of the inherent risks of agritourism activities if such agritourism business has posted the notice in substantially the form as is provided in §19-36-4(b) of this code.

(b) The provisions of §19-36-3(a) of this code shall not prevent or in any way limit the liability of an agritourism business that does any of the following:

(1) Commits an act or omission that constitutes gross negligence or willful or wanton disregard for the health and safety of the participant which proximately causes injury, death, loss, or damage to the participant; or

(2) Commits an intentional act or omission which proximately causes injury, death, loss, or damage to the participant.

(c) Any limitation on legal liability afforded by this section to an agritourism business is in addition to any other limitations of legal liability otherwise provided by law.

(d) Participants have a duty to act as a reasonably prudent person when engaging in recreational activities offered by agritourism businesses in this state.

§19-36-4. Liability of agritourism businesses.

(a) To qualify for the limitation on liability afforded by §19-36-3 of this code, an agritourism business shall post and maintain signs that contain the notice specified in §19-36-4(b) of this code. The sign must be placed in a clearly visible location at the entrance to the agritourism location and at the site of the agritourism activity. The notice must be clearly legible, with each letter to be a minimum of one inch in height. Every written contract entered into by an agritourism professional for the providing of professional services, instruction, or the rental of equipment to a participant, whether or not the contract involves agritourism activities on or off the location or at the site of the agritourism activity, must contain in clearly legible print the notice specified in §19-36-4(b) of this code.

(b) The signs and contracts described in §19-36-4(a) of this code must contain the following notice:

NOTICE

Under West Virginia law, there may be limited liability for an injury to or death of a participant in an agritourism activity conducted at this agritourism business if the injury or death results from the inherent risks of the agritourism activity. Inherent risks of agritourism activities include, among others, risks of injury inherent to landscape, terrain, equipment, and animals, as well as the potential for you to act in a negligent manner that may contribute to your injury or death. You are assuming the risk of participating in this agritourism activity.

(c) Failure to comply with the requirements concerning notices provided in this section will prevent an agritourism business from invoking the privileges of immunity provided by this article.

§19-36-5. Maintenance of property status for certain purposes; exceptions.

(a) Notwithstanding any provision of this code to the contrary, the occurrence of agritourism does not change the nature or use of property that otherwise qualifies as agricultural for building code and property tax classification purposes.

(b) An agritourism business may use certain of its facilities for occasional events without complying with building codes applicable to structures used for such purposes on a full-time basis as long as such facilities are deemed structurally sound and otherwise safe for the intended use.

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