Rep. Austin Scott, Chairman of the House Agriculture Committee's Subcommittee on Horticulture, Research, Biotechnology and Foreign Agriculture, held a public hearing to review the impact of enforcement activities by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) on specialty crop growers. Specifically, Subcommittee Members addressed growing concerns that DOL is using the "Hot Goods" provision under the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 (FLSA) in an arbitrary manner against producers of perishable agricultural commodities without regard for the inevitable destruction of the product and significant economic hardship inflicted on farmers and their employees.
H.R. 935, The Reducing Regulatory Burdens Act of 2013
A group of bipartisan lawmakers introduced H.R. 935, The Reducing Regulatory Burdens Act of 2013. This bill would amend the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) and the Clean Water Act (CWA) to clarify Congressional intent and eliminate the requirement of a National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit for the use of pesticides already approved for use under FIFRA.
This legislation passed the U.S. House of Representatives on March 31, 2011 as H.R. 872, The Reducing Regulatory Burdens Act of 2011. Additionally, it advanced out of the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry, but the full Senate failed to consider it during the last Congress.
H.R. 935 is necessary to address the negative economic consequences of the ruling posed by the case National Cotton Council v. EPA (6th Cir. 2009). Under the court ruling, pesticide users are required to obtain a redundant permit under the Clean Water Act (CWA) or be subject to a costly fine.
Introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives on March 4, 2013