Today NASDA held a meeting with the Administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Scott Pruitt and Ray Starling, Special Assistant for Agriculture, Trade and Food Assistance at the White House. A regionally diverse group of NASDA Members attended including Louisiana Commissioner of Agriculture & Forestry and NASDA President Dr. Mike Strain, Indiana Director of Agriculture Ted McKinney, Connecticut Commissioner of Agriculture Steve Reviczky, and New Mexico Secretary of Agriculture Jeff Witte.
NASDA Members conversed with Administrator Pruitt on one of the association's key priorities for the year: cooperative federalism. NASDA highlighted the need for a more robust partnership and role for the states in federal policymaking and full funding for federal mandates for which states act as co-regulators. NASDA members also thanked the administrator for recent actions on Chlorpyrifos and the Waters of the United States.
NASDA members also highlighted the importance of programs under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA). With 44 NASDA Members as the FIFRA lead agency, it is critically important the EPA carries out science-based processes for decision making when it comes to critical issues such as the Worker Protection Standards (WPS).
With water quality being a critical tenet of EPA's mission, NASDA Members stressed the importance of volunteer, incentive-based nutrient management programs and the need for robust consultation and sufficient resources to assist in the maintenance and health of agriculture’s most important resource. Finally, NASDA members, Administrator Pruitt and Mr. Starling discussed how the new administration and NASDA can work to continue advancing American agriculture.