Beltway View: Beyond The Farm Bill

Jay Vroom, right, discusses the 2012 Farm Bill with Sen. Ben Nelson (D-NE), center, and CWGN's Orion Samuelson, left.
Jay Vroom, right, discusses the 2012 Farm Bill with Sen. Ben Nelson (D-NE), center, and CWGN’s Orion Samuelson, left.

While the 2012 Farm Bill currently takes center stage in agricultural policy discussions, its future remains in question even as I write this article in early August and we face emergency drought relief legislation. However, there are many other policy issues that may impact the crop protection industry, the distribution channel and U.S. growers. CropLife America (CLA), the national association representing the crop protection industry in Washington, D.C., is directly engaged on all of these policies on Capitol Hill.

Two of these key provisions were added to the House Farm Bill, the Federal Agriculture Reform and Risk Management Act of 2012 (FARRM), which was introduced on July 12. Whether these issues are brought forth as part of the Farm Bill or stand alone, they are worth watching.

H.R. 872 And NPDES Permitting

In 2011, the implementation of the Clean Water Act (CWA) National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permits promised duplicative and burdensome regulations for the nation’s pesticide applicators with no demonstrated health or environmental benefits. Due to an erroneous court ruling, applicators are now required to obtain additional permitting for certain applications to, over or near water, although these applications are already made in accordance with the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA). Full nationwide implementation of the court ruling began March 1, 2012, and has added increased cost, paperwork and the potential for extremist lawsuits against applicators.

Congress has worked multiple times since the court ruling to advance legislation clarifying that NPDES permits are not required for certain aquatic pesticide applications. States are now working through multiple new challenges stemming from the implementation of the new permits.

Nevertheless, CLA continues to drive a coalition effort to advance the latest legislation, H.R. 872, and see it enacted by Congress.

This year, Congressional efforts to write new farm policy provided a new vehicle for H.R. 872. In the Senate, Senators Kay Hagan (D-NC) and Mike Crapo (R-ID) led a bipartisan effort to attach H.R. 872 to Senate’s version of the Farm Bill. Despite bipartisan support for the Hagan-Crapo amendment, the amendment was not afforded the opportunity for a vote by the full Senate. Similarly, the U.S. House of Representatives Agriculture Committee included a provision in FARMM that moves H.R. 872 forward.

While questions abound for the future of the House Farm Bill, Congress has demonstrated that they are dedicated to advancing the legislation. With support from Congress and continued advocacy from the agricultural community, we can find a legislative fix to this permitting quagmire.

Pesticide Registration Improvement Act (PRIA)

The Pesticide Registration Improvement Act (PRIA) is a piece of legislation which helps ensure a predictable and timely registration process for new crop protection products. The law is intended to provide additional resources for EPA registration activities and more predictable service for pesticide registrants. This means that growers will have access to new products in a timely manner while industry works in conjunction with EPA to register new products. PRIA is currently set to expire on September 30, 2012. Since PRIA was first enacted in 2003, all stakeholders – from registrants, EPA, the environmental community and growers alike – have realized significant measurable benefits.

PRIA reauthorization was also included as a provision in the House Farm Bill, providing another opportunity to advance the legislation before the September 30 deadline. Whether or not that legislation moves as part of the Farm Bill, CLA is optimistic that PRIA reauthorization will be accomplished in time. Reauthorization legislation has been delivered to Capitol Hill and efforts to gain Congressional support have been encouraging. All of the parties involved understand the implication of a smooth and streamlined pesticide registration process, and how it can help America’s farmers.

While we cannot predict the future of the Farm Bill and the path it may take, these two policy issues are of top importance to CLA, its members and the agricultural community.


Leave a Reply

Legislation Stories

LegislationFall Fertilizer Transportation Could Be At Risk With Possible Rail Stoppage
October 1, 2015
Failure by Congress to extend the deadline for the implementation of Positive Train Control (PTC) on the railroads could gridlock Read More
LegislationEndangered Species Act, Pollinator Health Among Key Issues For CropLife America
September 7, 2015
Recently, CropLife® magazine had the chance to talk with CropLife America about the association’s key objectives and concerns. CropLife (CL): Read More
FertilizerTFI Weighs In On Fertilizer Rail Transport Bill
May 14, 2015
With today’s House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure as a backdrop, The Fertilizer Institute (TFI) registered its support for policies Read More
LegislationGov. Kasich Signs Ohio Bill For Lake Erie Water Quality
April 2, 2015
Gov. John Kasich has signed a bill aimed at protecting Lake Erie and Ohio’s water quality, reports editorial staff at Read More
Top 100 Articles
CropLife 100CHS, MKC Consider Second Grain Terminal In Milan, KS
November 30, 2015
CHS Inc., an energy, grains and food company and the nation’s leading farmer-owned cooperative, and MKC, a full-service farm cooperative Read More
CropLife 100United Cooperative Acquires Four ADM Wisconsin Facilities
November 12, 2015
United Cooperative, based out of Beaver Dam, WI, recently acquired four grain and agronomy locations from Archer Daniels Midland (ADM) Read More
CropLife 100BRANDT Car Makes NASCAR Xfinity Series
October 29, 2015
BRANDT will join JR Motorsports with driver, Justin Allgaier, for the 2016 NASCAR Xfinity (NXS) Series season. Allgaier will pilot Read More
CHS Building exterior
CropLife 100CHS Leaders Help Shape Succession Report
October 22, 2015
Succession planning was listed as a main concern of cooperative leaders at this summer’s 15 regional CHS owner town hall Read More
Fall Harvest
CropLife 100Pinnacle Purchases Eight Regional Seed Companies
October 12, 2015
Pinnacle Agriculture Holdings has announced the purchase of eight regional seed companies to advance its seed business. Pinnacle has acquired: Read More
MRM Agricultural Service
CropLife 100Pinnacle Acquires CropLife 100 Ag Retailer
October 8, 2015
Pinnacle Agriculture Holdings, LLC has successfully acquired the Missouri-based agronomy business of MRM Agricultural Service, LLC and its affiliates (MRM). Operating Read More
Latest News
CropLife 100CHS, MKC Consider Second Grain Terminal In Milan, KS
November 30, 2015
CHS Inc., an energy, grains and food company and the nation’s leading farmer-owned cooperative, and MKC, a full-service farm cooperative Read More
Dow AgroSciences Logo wall
HerbicidesGowan Co. To Acquire DNA Herbicides From Dow AgroScienc…
November 30, 2015
Gowan Co. has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire the entire global dinitroaniline (DNA) herbicide portfolio from Dow AgroSciences Read More
Palmer pigweed in soybean stubble
Herbicides‘Back to the Future’ Weed Control: Herbicide Outlook 20…
November 30, 2015
What’s new for herbicides in 2016? Well, not much, but the learning process is sure to continue for fine-tuning resistance Read More
Tim Hassinger Dow AgroSciences President and CEO
HerbicidesDow Expects Enlist Duo To Be Available For The 2016 U.S…
November 30, 2015
Relative to EPA’s recently filed motion to vacate the registration of Enlist Duo herbicide, The Dow Chemical Co. is confident Read More
HerbicidesBREAKING: EPA Pulls Registration On Dow’s Enlist …
November 25, 2015
EPA on Wednesday withdrew approval of a controversial new weed killer to be used on genetically modified corn and soybeans, Read More
FertilizerYara Tampa Ammonia Terminal Garners ResponsibleAg Honor…
November 25, 2015
Yara has received its first ResponsibleAg Certification for its Tampa, FL, Ammonia terminal location. This achievement demonstrates Yara’s commitment to Read More
ManagementReviewing The Top Ag Stories For 2015
November 24, 2015
Editors Eric Sfiligoj and Paul Schrimpf discuss the most noteworthy events from this past year in agriculture. Read More
EmployeesAgriculture Jobs May Be Plentiful, But New Grads Are Sc…
November 24, 2015
Close to 60,000 jobs are set to open up in agriculture each year for the next five years, but there's not enough grads to fill them. Read More
Radish cover crop
StewardshipCover Crops Guide Helps Growers Improve Water Quality
November 23, 2015
A publication that teaches growers the advantages of using cover crops to improve soil health and crop yields has won Read More
Crop InputsThe Andersons’ Products Receive California Organi…
November 23, 2015
The Plant Nutrient Group of The Andersons, Inc. announced today that its Humic DG and Black Gypsum DG products are Read More
Eric SfiligojNew European Study Seems To Support Glyphosate Safety
November 23, 2015
Looking at any international news over the past few years, it might seem as if the European Union (EU) is Read More
Toggle Biostimulant corn roots
Crop InputsTwo New Biostimulants Added To United Suppliers’ …
November 20, 2015
Winfield US announces the launch of two new products in the United Suppliers portfolio for the 2016 crop season, Optify Read More
StewardshipNRDC Report: Cover Crops Contain Vast Benefits
November 19, 2015
As harvest season ends and farmers in the United States ready themselves for winter, one small change could make a Read More
Fall Harvest
Seed/BiotechArysta Launches New Seed Protectant
November 19, 2015
As spring wheat growers begin planning for a strong start to their season, Arysta LifeScience North America announces RANCONA V Read More
Crop InputsInocucor Receives U.S. Patent For Microbials
November 19, 2015
Inocucor Technologies Inc., the Montreal-based agriculture biotech company, was issued patent No. 9,175,258 by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office to protect Read More
ManagementSyngenta Rumors and ARA 2015 Preview
November 19, 2015
CropLife Editor Eric Sfiligoj looks at the latest rumors involving Syngenta selling its crop protection business and talks about events Read More
EquipmentAGCO Announces Finalists For Operator Of The Year Honor
November 19, 2015
AGCO Corp. has announced the four top operators chosen as finalists for AGCO’s 10th Annual Operator of the Year program, Read More
High Plains Aquifer
StewardshipStudy: High Plains Aquifer Overall Usage In Decline
November 18, 2015
A new Kansas State University study finds that the over-tapping of the High Plains Aquifer’s groundwater beyond the aquifer’s recharge Read More