Ohio State Webinar Series Addresses Food, Agricultural and Environmental Law Issues

The use of unmanned aerial vehicles in agriculture is just one issue to be discussed during new law webinar series. (Photo: Thinkstock)

COLUMBUS, Ohio – As the use of unmanned aerial vehicles becomes more prevalent in agriculture, understanding the laws and regulations on the use of such devices is paramount, experts say.

To help provide guidance and understanding of the legal issues surrounding UAVs, Ohio State University Extension’s Agricultural and Resource Law program will discuss the topic in the first of a series of free webinars beginning Dec. 12, said Peggy Hall, Ohio State University Extension’s agricultural and resource law field specialist.

The webinars, which will focus on pressing regional and national agricultural law issues, are intended both for law practitioners and those in the agriculture community, said Hall, who is also an assistant professor for OSU Extension.

OSU Extension is the outreach arm of Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences.

“By offering the information in a webinar, it allows us to bring local, regional and national high-quality legal expertise and knowledge to our audience,” she said. “Most of the topics are those that are hot issues in agriculture that the legal community is trying to sort through now, while others are of long-standing issues that never go away.

“The webinars are designed to offer information to help legal practitioners who directly serve the agriculture community in Ohio become more informed on the issues that impact the agriculture industry. The webinars can also benefit members of the agriculture community itself, who can take away information that can help them better deal with legal issues surrounding their farm operations.”

The Dec. 12 webinar, “Big Data and UAVs:  Legal Issues for Agriculture,” is at 1 p.m. and will feature John Dillard, an associate attorney with the law firm of Olsson, Frank, Weeda, Terman, Matz, PC in Washington, D.C. Dillard, who is a leading expert on legal issues with technology and agriculture, has a background in agriculture and experience advising clients in the food and agricultural industries. Dillard also authors the blog Ag in the Courtroom on AgWeb.com and the column Legal Ease in Farm Journal magazine. Logon information will be available soon at aglaw.osu.edu/webinars.

“The webinar will present a practical analysis of the legal issues raised by agriculture’s increasing use of large data sources and UAVs,” Hall said. 

Other topics in the series include:

  • The 2014 Farm Bill: Guiding a Client through the New Law, with Bill Bridgforth of Ramsay, Bridgforth, Robinson & Raley LLP, Pine Bluff, Arkansas, Jan. 9, at 1 p.m. 
  • Managing Pollutant Discharge Risk on Farms, with Chris Walker and Jack Van Kley of Van Kley & Walker LLP, Dayton/Columbus, Ohio, and Tom Mehnke of Mehnke Consulting LLC, Greenville, Ohio, Feb. 12 at 1 p.m. (tentative).
  • Introduction to Food Law: What You Need to Know to Build a Food Law Practice, with Jason Foscolo of Foscolo & Handel PLLC, Sag Harbor, New York, March 12, at 1 p.m.
  • Nursing Home Costs & Medicaid:  The One-Two Punch to the Family Farm with Craig Vandervoort of Sitterly & Vandervoort Ltd, Lancaster, Ohio, April 10, at 1 p.m.
  • Rights and Remedies for Protecting Your Water Supply in Ohio with Joe Reidy of Frost Brown Todd LLC, Columbus, Ohio, and Peggy Kirk Hall of Ohio State’s Agricultural and  Resource Law Program, May 14 (tentative).

Additional information about the webinar series, including a link to the series and archived recording, is online at aglaw.osu.edu. More topics, presenters and dates will be added later to the webinar series, Hall said.

Tracy Turner
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Peggy Hall