The 2018 Farm Bill is slowly but surely making its way across
the finish line. The House and Senate have each passed a farm bill, and a
conference committee has been established to resolve the differences between
the two bills. While the House bill includes a robust regulatory relief
package, the Senate version does not.
NAAA and the agriculture industry have been working to fix these regulatory
issues for over a decade. This might be the last opportunity for several
years to finally obtain regulatory relief.
This is why NAAA is calling on its members to reach out
to their senators and tell them why regulatory relief needs to be included in
the 2018 Farm Bill.
The regulatory relief issues on the line include the removal
of the duplicative requirement to obtain a National Pollutant Discharge
Elimination System (NPDES) Pesticide General Permit (PGP) for crop protection
products already covered under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and
Rodenticide Act (FIFRA). In addition to being costly and burdensome for small
businesses, the NPDES PGP can subject applicators to unfounded litigation. It is also unnecessary because pesticides are already tested and regulated under
FIFRA for water safety, with strict instructions indicated on the EPA-approved
product label to protect water.
Additionally, there is a provision in the House bill that
would only allow state and federal agencies to establish pesticide regulations,
not local counties and towns.
Specifically, the senators named to the conference committee
are: Sen. John Boozman (R-AR), Sen. Joni Ernst (R-IA), Sen. Pat Roberts (R-KS),
Sen. John Hoeven (R-ND), Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND), as well as Rep. Mike
Conaway (TX-11) and Rep. Collin Peterson (MN-7). If any of these legislators
represent you, please email
Frank Taylor for a letter detailing the importance of these provisions that you
can send to your legislator. You can add your company letterhead and customize
the letter in any other way you think would be impactful.
If your senator or representative is not listed above, you can
still email Frank to participate in this grassroots campaign to enlist their
support of regulatory reform. They still
may be an influencing conferee or could influence another Farm Bill conferee.
This is a fantastic opportunity to relieve the agriculture industry of
duplicative, costly and burdensome regulations. We cannot afford let the
moment pass without action. Make your voice heard and contact your senators