Ag pesticide applicator and course provider update

Brownwood Bulletin
Scott Anderson

To address the Continuing Education Unit (CEU) and licensure requirements for Ag Pesticide applicators, the Texas Department of Agriculture (TDA) will work with the ag pesticide applicators and CEU course providers of Texas during this critical time.

Licensed applicators with expiring licenses or needing CEU’s will be allowed to renew their license even if they have not met their CEU requirement for their current licensing period through December 31, 2020.

Due to the restrictions of meetings in place by the Governor and many cities, many CEU events have been canceled. The TDA will work to insure all the state’s pesticide applicators are able to acquire their licenses and required continuing education courses in a safe and effective manner during this time frame.

Once the restrictions have been lifted and courses are scheduled again, applicators will be required to obtain their required CEUs for their respective license classification for each licensing period. By allowing a CEU exemption, this will allow the applicators to maintain their ability to perform pesticide applications for pests, weeds, insects etc., without disrupting daily business functions. Applicators are encouraged to complete online courses even if online courses were completed the previous licensing period.

For licenses expiring in 2020 ONLY: TDA will exempt commercial, non-commercial and non-commercial political applicators who have taken online or correspondence courses within the last year.

The TDA Rule 7.24 (t) (2) does not allow for online or correspondence courses to be taken 2 years consecutively. In light of the unusual circumstances due to Covid 19 (coronavirus), TDA will allow online or correspondence courses to be taken 2 consecutive years. This exemption will be for the current 2020 licensing period. Commercial, non-commercial and non-commercial political pesticide applicators are required to obtain 5 CEUs per licensing period.

For licenses expiring in 2020 ONLY: The TDA will also exempt private applicators from the TDA Rule 7.24 (v) (5). This rule does not allow a private applicator to acquire more than 10 CEUs through correspondence courses. During this quarantine time frame, private applicators will be allowed to acquire ALL of their CEUs through correspondence courses (online). Private applicators are required to obtain 15 CEUs per 5- year licensing period.

Producers in Brown County are eligible to apply for 2020 Livestock Forage Disaster Program (LFP) benefits on small grains, native pastures and improved pastures.                 

LFP provides compensation if you suffer grazing losses for covered livestock due to drought on privately owned or cash leased land or fire on federally managed land.

County committees can only accept LFP applications after notification is received by the National Office of qualifying drought or if a federal agency prohibits producers from grazing normal permitted livestock on federally managed lands due to qualifying fire. 

You must complete a CCC-853 and the required supporting documentation no later than January 30, 2021, for 2020 losses.

For additional Information about LFP, including eligible livestock and fire criteria, contact your Brown County USDA Service Center at 325-643-2573 Ext. 2 or visit fsa.usda.gov.