FAIRFAX, Va. – The National Pest Management Association’s public policy team is asking NPMA members to visit with their congressional representatives when they are in district during August. This call-to-action is to make a final push for congressional support of H.R. 7266, which would codify federal pesticide preemption (as part of the 2023 Farm Bill) as the national standard, ensuring that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the state lead agency jointly regulate pesticide usage. It would preclude localities from regulating pesticides, instead ensuring that agencies with scientific expertise are able to evaluate whether a product is safe and effective, promoting a science-based policy.
Ashley Amidon, vice president of public policy, NPMA, told PCT that August visits can be effective because congressional members are looking to “take the temperature” of their constituents, especially with the mid-term elections coming up. “And from our members’ perspective, we’ve got so many folks that are so excited about H.R. 7266, and so ready to see preemption fixed in the 2023 Farm Bill, that I just think all the stars aligned for us to try it.”
NPMA was close to getting pesticide preemption included in the 2018 Farm Bill, and since then members have continued to educate their congressional reps (e.g., Legislative Day visits) about the importance of this issue. Also since that time, NPMA has been working with golf course, landscape and mosquito industry associations as well as Agricultural Retailers Association to hold joint congressional visits and create one-pagers. In May, NPMA spearheaded a letter-writing campaign in support of H.R. 7266 that included 159 individual associations as signatories.
“I’m optimistic in the sense that I think we’ve got a lot of the pieces in place, even more than we did last time, to really push this in a united way even beyond our industry,” Amidon said.
NPMA will be hosting a webinar on July 20, where they will walk members through the in-district visit request process and answer any questions they may have. They can also request a one-on-one training session with a member of the Public Policy team. For more information contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Read more at pctonline.com.