PDA’s Fertilizer Panel Recommends Removing Professionals from Fertilizer Bill
Wednesday, April 1, 2015
Posted by: Gregg Robertson
HARRISBURG – The Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture’s (PDA) Fertilizer Advisory Board, in a unanimous vote, recommended at its March meeting that lawn care professionals be taken out of the EPA-backed turf grass fertilizer bill, SB 563.
Fertilizer Advisory Board
The PDA Fertilizer Advisory Board provides advice on fertilizer regulatory issues to the Secretary of Agriculture. Dan Eichenlaub of Eichenlaub, Inc. a PLNA member, serves on the board. Eichenlaub made the motion to take lawn care professionals out of the bill.
Bill Reintroduced this Session
The bill was reintroduced this session in the state Senate by Senator Richard Alloway (R-Franklin). Alloway also serves as a member of the Chesapeake Bay Commission, a federal multi-state agency responsible for water quality in the Chesapeake Bay. This is the third session in which the bill has been introduced. The bill has not moved out of the Senate in the previous two sessions.
This session’s version of the bill is now in the Senate Agriculture and Rural Affairs Committee. PLNA is actively working with legislators to make sure the bill does not move again this session.
PLNA’s objections to the legislation stem from the lack of any scientific basis for the bill’s provisions. In fact, data in EPA’s own expert panel report on the impact of lawn fertilizer on the Bay indicates that the Bay may actually be harmed by the legislation. The bill also would result in millions in compliance costs for Pennsylvania’s lawn care professionals, for no environmental benefit.
For more detail on the bill and PLNA’s concerns, see PLNA’s e-News of February 25, 2014. To download a copy of the current bill, click here.