Letter

Dear Chairman Leahy, Vice Chair Shelby, Chairman Merkley and Ranking Member Murkowski:

The undersigned organizations represent agriculture, food, fiber, public health, pest management, landscape, environmental, and related industries, including small businesses and state departments of agriculture, who support sound science and the risk-based regulation of pesticides. To ensure the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Office of Pesticide Programs (OPP) has the resources necessary to register pesticides, we write to request $163 million in funding be included in the FY 2023 Interior, Environment and Related Agencies Appropriations Act.

Pesticides are vital to the protection of America’s public health, infrastructure, and natural resources and to providing America with food, fiber, and fuel, while assisting to achieve critical sustainability goals. Those engaged with these products must have the assurance of a federal regulatory process that supports science and innovation, along with safety and efficacy. Under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA), EPA/OPP provides for federal regulation of pesticide distribution, sale, and use and stringent safety standards and oversight. OPP specifically considers economic, social, and environmental benefits and risks for all pesticide products before they are made available for sale and use.

Prior to 2004, the process of approving a pesticide product for use could take an indeterminate amount of time – potentially threatening the nation’s public health, food, and environment. By passing the Pesticide Registration Improvement Act (PRIA), and reauthorizing the Act in 2007, 2012, and 2019, Congress created industry fees that provide additional resources for EPA’s registration efforts, established a more predictable evaluation process, and provided resources for important worker protection safety and training activities. Federal regulation of pesticide products is necessary because it provides a rigorous, scientific basis for product efficacy and safety, as well as giving confidence in the products and their application. The increased funding supports business predictability within the pesticide registration process and gives established timelines for bringing new products to the market.

We appreciate the Subcommittee’s funding of $129.3 million in FY 2022 for PRIA-related activities in OPP. The President’s Budget for FY 2023 funds PRIA-related activities at $138 million. We request $163 million, allocated among the following accounts: $144 million for Environmental Programs and Management; $6.153 million for Science and Technology; and $14.027 million for State and Tribal Assistance Grants. We also request $1.7 million for pesticide consultation for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

Pesticide manufacturers, pesticide users, and the public all have an interest in ensuring that the pesticide regulatory process imposes regulatory controls on pesticide use based on the principles of sound science, transparency, and broad stakeholder engagement. We need EPA to be fully resourced to ensure we have access to tools continue to protect the public and our environment while maintaining America’s important food, fiber, and biofuel production and protecting its public health and infrastructure. We urge you to provide the funding requested.

Sincerely,

CC: Members of the Subcommittee

American Mosquito Control Association
Agricultural Retailers Association
American Farm Bureau Federation
American Seed Trade Association
Aquatic Plant Management Society
California Farm Bureau
Council of Producers and Distributors of Agrotechnology
CropLife America
Delta Council
Far West Agribusiness Association
Florida Fertilizer & Agrichemical Association
Golf Course Superintendents Association of America
Illinois Fertilizer and Chemical Association
Michigan Agri-Business Association
Minnesota Agri-Growth Council
Minnesota Crop Production Retailers
National Alliance of Independent Crop Consultants
National Association of Landscape Professionals
National Association of State Departments of Agriculture
National Association of Wheat Growers
National Barley Growers Association
National Corn Growers Association
National Cotton Council
National Onion Association
National Pest Management Association
National Potato Council
North Dakota Grain Growers Association
Ohio Agribusiness Association
Oregonians for Food and Shelter
RISE (Responsible Industry for a Sound Environment)
Rocky Mountain Agribusiness Association
Rocky Mountain Golf Course Superintendents Association
South Dakota Agri-Business Association
Southern Crop Production Association
Texas Ag Industries Association
Texas Vegetation Management Association
U.S. Canola Association
USA Rice
Weed Science Society of America
Western Growers
Wisconsin Agri-Business Association
Wyoming Ag Business Association

Date Sent:

June 6, 2022

Sender:

Agricultural Coalition

Recipient:

Senate Committee on Appropriations and Subcommittee on Interior and the Environment leadership

Subject:

FY 23 Funding for EPA OPP

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