House Approves Culver Bill to Protect Domestic Animals as Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture Quarantines Cattle to Prevent Avian Flu Spread

HARRISBURG – Today, the state House of Representatives approved a bill sponsored by Sen. Lynda Schlegel Culver (R-27) to help protect domestic animals and the food supply against dangerous transmissible diseases. This passage happens as a rise in reported avian flu outbreaks in dairy cattle has been seen in several states across the nation.

“I want to thank my colleagues in the House of Representative for their affirmative vote on Senate Bill 979,” said Culver. “When it is signed into law it will allow the Department of Agriculture to have individuals or businesses who deal in domestic animal, commercial feed, or pet food sales post on their premises departmental notices regarding dangerous transmissible diseases.”

The bill will now be sent to the governor to be signed into law.

Avian influenza has not been detected in Pennsylvanian cattle, but has been found in several western and midwestern states. Due to the rise in reported avian flu outbreaks in dairy cattle, the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture (PDA) is requiring any dairy cows coming into Pennsylvania from an outside state to be quarantined and tested for the virus.

The quarantine only affects dairy cattle from any state where avian influenza has been confirmed during the past 30 days. Among other requirements, the dairy cattle may not be imported to, stopped off in or unloaded in Pennsylvania without testing of nasal swabs and milk.

“I commend Secretary Redding and the Department of Agriculture for taking a proactive approach to the potential spread of avian influenza to cattle, which we are starting to see in other states,” said Culver. “A biosecurity plan is a great way to defend livestock from the spread of disease. We have seen how Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza – HPAI – decimated many poultry farms across the state during the last few years.”

The PDA currently has the authority to issue quarantines and regulate the keeping of domestic animals to exclude or contain a dangerous transmissible disease. Culver’s bill would grant the department the ability to require any establishment in which domestic animals and feed are offered for public sale to post information about dangerous transmittable diseases.

More information about Culver is available online at Residents can follow her on Facebook at and on Instagram at for updates about legislative action in Harrisburg and news in the 27th District.


CONTACTBetsy Reichenbach 717-787-8928

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