Major Changes to MDNR Rules
A new rule go into effect May 1st that affect agrichemical facilities (i.e. fertilizer, herbicides). The rule mainly does two things. First, the rule eliminates the requirement to obtain construction permits for concrete secondary and operational containments. In 2013, HB28, a bill supported by MO-AG and passed by the Missouri General Assembly, changed state law by removing the requirement that agrichemical facilities obtain construction permits for concrete secondary and operation containments. The law change is now reflected in this rule. Secondly, the new rule also eliminates the requirement that all agrichemical facilities must apply for, or maintain, an operating permit. After this regulation change, Clean Water Commission regulations do not require businesses with a SIC code of 5191 to apply for an agrichemical operating permit. A local retail facility that mixes or blends fertilizer on a small scale is likely classified under SIC code 5191, and therefore, are no longer required to have an operating permit. If you are not a retailer and thus do not fall under the SIC code 5191 exemption, you will need to maintain your permit and there are some new requirements of the permit.
Robert Brundage, MO-AG's legal counsel, looked out for the interests of MO-AG members throughout this multi-year process of revising this rule after the 2013 law change. Thank you, Counselor. I would also like to thank Governor Greitens and his staff. At the CWC on January 11th, final approval of the rule was on the Commission's agenda. The Commission, however, tabled the rule stating concerns with Gov. Greitens executive order which expressed a desire to remove 'needless and burdensome regulations.' We met with Gov. Greiten's staff and explained that this rule was a good compromise that actually eliminated regulations for many agribusinesses. The Governor's office understood and acted quickly to allow the rule to move forward. So, again, thank you to Governor Greitens and his staff.
The rule goes into effect May 1st. You should understand the rule, how it may affect you, and what you need to do. To help with that process, an article which provides more background, summarizes the rule change, and discusses what you need to know can be found HERE
. A copy of the rule itself can be found HERE
. Also, a copy of the agrichemical facility permit template can be found HERE
. In particular, note paragraph one of page 2 of the permit (applicability) which describes the relationship between the operating permit, the rule, and SIC codes. If you have any questions, please contact Robert at his law firm (Newman, Comley & Ruth) at 573-634-2266 or contact the MO-AG office.
Governor Greitens Signs Dicamba Legislation
On Friday, Governor Eric Greitens signed into law SCS HCS HB 662 which changed Missouri pesticide law. With the emergency clause added to the bill, the legislation became effective immediately with the Governor's signature. As reported in earlier editions of the MO-AG minute, this bill addresses the illegal, off-label application of dicamba. The law now allows for a penalty of not more than $10,000 for each violation and a penalty of $25,000 per violation for chronic violators. The penalty for refusal to submit information to complaint investigators is $5,000. The language which MO-AG asked be included stating the penalty applies only to persons who "knowingly applied a herbicide to a crop for which the herbicide was not labeled for use" was in the final bill that was signed into law by Governor Greitens.
Governor Greitens signed the bill in Portageville, MO in Rone Hall. Rep. Don Rone was the sponsor of the bill. MO-AG again expresses its appreciation to Rep. Rone for his willingness to work with us throughout the legislative process.
Animal Summit Comes to Kansas City
Meanwhile in Jefferson City
This past week marks the seventh week of session and it is officially constituent season. Interest groups have booths in the rotunda and special guests are constantly being introduced on House and Senate floors which signals session is in full swing. A lot of time is still being spent in committees. Senate Committee Chairs turned in approximately 40 bills this past week to add to the Senate perfection calendar. The House focused their efforts on penalties for crimes against law enforcement officers and labor bills. HB175, which directs that regulation of seed and fertilizer is to be conducted by the Missouri Department of Agriculture and is supported by MO-AG, was reported 'do pass' by the House rules committee and now heads to the House floor.
To see MO-AG's legislation of interest, CLICK HERE
Governor Greitens filled vacancies on the University of Missouri Board of Curators. Greitens announced his appointments of his former campaign finance chairman Jeffery Layman, St. Louis area attorney Darryl Chatman, and President of Farmer Holding Company Jamie Farmer to the board. The Senate is likely to confirm the Governor's appointments. In the news release Greitens said, "We can encourage more intellectual diversity and become the best state in the country at preparing students for rewarding careers. These curators bring knowledge and real world experience to the table. They will be important voices for our students and families."