On Thursday (September 21), the Arkansas State Plant Board voted to approve regulatory changes for the application of products labeled for agricultural use that contain dicamba in Arkansas during their regularly scheduled quarterly meeting.
The regulatory changes will prohibit the use in Arkansas between April 16 and October 31. The regulations include exemptions for the use of dicamba in pastures, rangeland, turf, ornamental, direct injection for forestry, and home use. The approved regulations are closely aligned with the recommendations from the Dicamba Task Force and the Plant Board’s Pesticide Committee.
The Board’s regulatory changes concerning the use of dicamba will now be subject to a 30-day public comment period to be followed by a public hearing that will be held on November 8. Following the public comment and public hearing period, the final proposed rule will be forwarded to the Executive Subcommittee of the Arkansas Legislative Council for final rule approval.
The board also voted to approve a new regulation that establishes notice procedures for requesting additional research and for restricting products beyond EPA approval. This regulatory change will also be subject to a 30-day public comment period to be followed by a public hearing held in conjunction with the Board’s next quarterly meeting on December 12. Following the public hearing the final proposed rule will be forwarded to the Executive Subcommittee of the Arkansas Legislative Council for final rule approval.
The State Plant Board also held a public hearing to consider changes to Pesticide Enforcement Response Regulations in accordance with Act 778 of 2017 that increased the maximum civil penalty from $1,000 to $25,000 for egregious violations from applications of dicamba or an Auxin=containing herbicide, or any new herbicide technology released after August 1, 2017. No public comments were received and the regulation will now be sent to the Executive Subcommittee of the Arkansas Legislative Council for final rule approval.
Other business before the Board included a review of the petition for rulemaking recently filed by Monsanto. The State Plant Board denied the petition by unanimous vote and will work with legal staff to prepare a response.
The proposed regulations and other dicamba information and updates can be found at: http://www.aad.arkansas.gov/arkansas-dicamba-information-updates.