Agricultural Commissioner
Protect and perpetuate Agriculture, the #1 industry in Butte County, by ensuring a safe and healthy agriculture product. Promote and provide confidence of buyers and sellers by ensuring fairness in local, national and international trade. Protect and promote the well being of all our customers and our community through the fair, equitable application of agricultural and weights and measures standards, emphasizing education and cooperation, including the use of technology to enhance customer service.
Weights and Measures

The Butte County Weights and Measures Department is supervised by Tom Pisani, the Deputy Director of Agriculture/Weights & Measures. Dan Shrout is the Ag. Biologist/Weights & Measures Inspector III and Uriah Johnson is the Ag. Biologist/Weights & Measures Inspector II.

About The Department 

The County Weights and Measures Department is a regulatory agency performing under the jurisdiction and direction of the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) and the Butte County Board of Supervisors. The department also works in cooperation with various federal, state, regional, and local agencies, including CDFA’s Division of Measurement Standards (DMS). The Weights & Measures division is mandated by state law to protect the interest of buyers and sellers to ensure honesty and integrity of everyday business transactions. At the county level, the Agriculture Department consists of two divisions: Agriculture and Weights & Measures.

Functions and Activities 

Historically, it has been the primary objective of weights and measures officials that "Equity Prevails" in the marketplace. To achieve that objective the department enforces the laws and regulations of the Business and Professions Code of California and the California Code of Regulations. Locally, this enforcement protects and promotes the economy and commerce of Butte County. Most consumer transactions involve the exchange of goods and services over some form of weighing or measuring device. Each year, county weights and measures officials provide protection by inspecting and testing the accuracy of these devices. Also, officials check packaged commodities for labeling requirements, quantity statement accuracy and pricing scanners for correctness. In addition to inspection activities, weights and measures officials provide education and training to the public as well as the regulated industries. 

Service Agency Program 

Persons that sell, rent, install, service, or repair commercial weighing and measuring devices are required to be licensed by the County’s Weights and Measures office. The lawful licensing of repair people by weights and measures officials assists with the integrity of the repair industry. Agents must take and pass a written exam before a license can be issued. Repairman must report their work to county weights and measures officials. This allows for efficient review of their work to validate the accuracy of that work and to verify the appropriate use of devices.

Device Program

Butte County Weights & Measures Officials inspect and test various types of weighing and measuring devices throughout the county. Examples of some of the types of devices inspected are: electric meters, wired cordage meters, propane meters, fuel dispensers, water meters, gas meters, produce scales, deli scales, shipping scales, livestock scales, truck scales, etc. There are approximately 8,000 such devices inspected in Butte County each year. All such devices are under the scrutiny of Weights & Measures. They are tested for accuracy and inspected to determine if they are appropriate for their intended use. Once that is determined the inspector certifies the device by affixing a paper seal to it.

Quantity Control Program 

Inspectors conduct inspections on packaged goods using statistical sampling procedures to determine if the package content is equal to the amount stated on the label. In addition, package labeling is examined for compliance with the basic labeling requirements as set by laws and regulations. Packaged commodities inspections occur at packing sites, distributors, retailers, supermarkets, meat markets, bakeries, deli's and various other locations where packaged items are sold. In many stores, bar code readers and price look-up systems (scanners) have replaced individual prices on items. Price verification audits and test purchases are made at various establishments throughout the county in order to check the accuracy of price transactions.

Weighmaster Program 

In one way or another, all of commerce is affected by the activities of weighmasters. Weighmasters are persons who weigh, measure, or count a bulk commodity, outside the presence of one party to the transaction and issue a certificate documenting the quantity that is used as the basis of a sale. A weighmaster can be the buyer, seller, or third neutral party. Courts of law recognize the certificates issued by weighmasters as being a legal document. As such, there are criteria that must be followed by weighmasters when issuing weighmaster certificates. Training is provided and inspections are performed by county weights and measures officials to ensure the correctness of the certificates issued. Diverse business such as rice milling plants, almond processors, cement plants, scrap metal yards, moving and storage companies, livestock dealers and rock quarries, just to name a few, are all weighmasters.

Petroleum Products Program 

The petroleum program run by Weights and Measures in California is unique. Locally, weights & measures officials enforce that portion of the California Business and Professions code relating to petroleum product standards. Periodically, through consumer complaints or routine audits, samples are taken and sent to the lab in Sacramento for analysis. This is done to insure that the product complies with national standards and is in fact the same product as being advertised. Labeling regulations are also strictly enforced to provide product identity and information to the buyer and seller. This includes price sign advertising, making sure no deceptive, false or misleading statements are being advertised, posting the product brand, grade, name, octane ratings to dispensers, ensuring that price advertising signs and pump dispenser prices agree, free air and water to those customers who purchase motor fuel, service to disable drivers and proper labels attached to underground storage tanks to prevent commingling of products.

Consumer Services

Weights and Measures Inspectors perform investigations of all complaints received from consumers as they relate to weights & measures. The complaints received occasionally involve the investigation of possible unlawful practices and at times, require the coordination with the District Attorney’s Office in order to prosecute violators.

Firewood Calculator Form
Device Registration Fee Schedule

 Contacts

Main Office
Phone: 530.538.7381
Fax: 530.538.7594
ButteAG@ButteCounty.net

Chico District Office
Phone: 530.891.2754
Fax: 530.879.3393

Gridley District Office
Phone: 530.846.4557
Fax: 530.846.5271

View full list of contacts.

 Locations

Main Office:
316 Nelson Avenue
Oroville, CA 95965
Office Hours:
Monday to Friday
 7:30am-12:00pm
1:00pm-4:30pm

District Offices:
196 Memorial Way
Chico, CA 95926
Monday to Friday
10:00am - 12:00pm
1:00pm-4:00pm

239 Sycamore Street
Gridley, CA 95948
Monday to Friday
2:00pm - 4:00pm

Excludes Holidays

View full list of locations.

Agricultural Resources
Amended Nut Crop Theft Ordinance
2013 Walnut Buying Period Announced
CDFA's Enforcement Branch
Cal Ag Permits - Contact our office for login information.
Napa County Ag Commissioner - Instructional videos and handouts are available through Napa County's website.
Agricultural Commissioner

316 Nelson Avenue
Oroville, CA 95965

Richard Price
Agricultural Commissioner

Butte County Extension (Farm Advisor)
Visit the Farm Advisor website for information about continuing education options.