NJPMA Descends on Capitol Hill to Fight for the NJ Pest Management Industry
On March 23, 2023, the NJPMA went to Capital Hill during the NPMA Legislative Days to meet with the offices of the Senators and Congresspersons from NJ. In attendance was the NJPMA President and Past-President, Bill Cowley and Bill Hoffman, respectively, NJPMA Board Director Carmen Reino, NJPMA Legislative Liaison and NPMA SPAR, Shannon Sked, and NJPMA Members Robert Martinez, Evens Clerjuste, Wayne Mauri, Jed Schemmel and Joe Giannetto. This team went to the offices of Senator Bob Menendez as well as Representatives Chris Smith (NJ District 04), Andy Kim (NJ District 03), Mikie Sherrill (NJ District 11) and Thomas Kean (NJ District 07). The industry representatives included companies from across all regions of our great Garden State and the politicians’ offices visited were from all various areas of the state and both sides of the political aisle. This ensured that the industry team spread the important message to all corners of those that represent our state at the Capitol. Most impactfully, the industry team met directly with Senator Menendez and Representative Chris Smith in person and got to speak with them on the mission.
The purpose of the visits was to inform the congressmembers of the importance to protect State Preemption in the 2023 Farm Bill. State preemption is the current way that the state of NJ has regulatory jurisdiction to regulate pesticide use, training and enforcement state-wide over municipalities and counties. This allows all company’s to operate on an equal playing field across the state and prevent us from having to understand dozens of different laws depending on which county or municipality we operate. Without State Preemption, there would be a chaotic patchwork of pesticide regulations, municipality to municipality or county to county. We would have to change our operations from customer stop to customer stop as we go throughout our day whenever we cross a municipal or county boundary. And any company that operates in multiply counties or municipalities would potentially have to have all their technicians trained in each way for all the locations they operate (which could differ). Therefore, its paramount that we protect State Preemption.
All the political offices were receptive to our needs and are considering the importance of State Preemption in the Farm Bill in order to prioritize it when the bill comes to the congress for discussions and votes. NJPMA continues to lobby for our industry to ensure that we can all operate under the standards that allows us to continue to protect people, property and public health!