(b) The commissioner is authorized to cooperate in any way with any person in programs designed to suppress or control noxious weeds already widely distributed in the state without first declaring a quarantine.
(c) The commissioner may, upon request, cooperate with federal and state agencies and political subdivisions in the enforcement of the narcotic laws to the extent of preventing the spread of and destroying marijuana or hemp, Cannabis spp., or other plants which produce drugs which have been condemned for destruction under the narcotics laws: Provided, That nothing herein shall authorize the commissioner to participate in a criminal investigation or prosecution under the Controlled Substances Act or federal narcotic laws. Such drug producing plants are hereby declared noxious.
(d) It is hereby declared to be the policy of the Legislature to control, and ultimately to eradicate, in West Virginia the noxious weed known as multiflora rose, which, having been introduced into West Virginia, multiplied and infested fields and meadows to the point where it defies eradication or control by means available to the average landowner.
The commissioner shall take any and all action necessary to eradicate the multiflora rose, Rosa multiflora, including, but not limited to, the commissioner's initiating a research and testing program.
The commissioner is therefore authorized to initiate a research and testing program for the control, and ultimately the eradication, of multiflora rose on suitable lands, public or private, which are infested by that noxious weed. The program may include control of any and all means by which multiflora rose is spread, whether by plant, animal or fowl, or by any other means. If the land to be used for the program is privately owned, then the owner must give his consent in writing to such use. In selecting the site for, and in conducting the program on the land the commissioner shall solicit the opinion of persons and groups affected by, or concerned about the proliferation of multiflora rose.
In conducting the program the commissioner shall use only such chemicals and other means that have been tested and determined to be reasonably safe for the purposes stated herein, and shall take all due care to avoid injury and damage to plant, animal and human life and health and to all structures of any kind on or near the site of the test program.
All agencies of state government and its political subdivisions shall cooperate with the commissioner for the purposes stated herein, and the commissioner shall use any public moneys available or appropriated for the pilot program. The commissioner may also use, as part of a cost- sharing program, any moneys contributed voluntarily by landowners, including persons whose land may be used for the program. The results of such programs shall be reported to the Legislature at its next regular session.
Note: WV Code updated with legislation passed through the 2013 1st Special Session
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