Dicamba bill approved in Senate - KAIT Jonesboro, AR - Region 8 News, weather, sports

Dicamba bill approved in Senate

(Source: KAIT) (Source: KAIT)
(Source: KAIT) (Source: KAIT)
LITTLE ROCK, AR (KAIT) -

A compromise bill that would increase penalties for the misuse of Dicamba is headed to the Governor's office for signature. 

The state Senate voted 35-0 Monday to approve House amendments for Senate Bill 501, sponsored by Sens. Blake Johnson, R-Corning and Dave Wallace, R-Leachville. 

Wallace said the Senate bill was combined with a similar bill - House Bill 1692, sponsored by Rep. David Hillman, R-Almyra. 

Wallace said everyone worked hard on the bill and gave credit to the bill's approval to Johnson. Under the bill, the Arkansas State Plant Board can assess a civil penalty of $1,000 up to $25,000 for damaging crops in an egregious manner. 

According to the bill, 60% of the money raised from penalties would go to the Arkansas State Plant Board Scholarship Fund with the rest going to the University of Arkansas Cooperative Extension Service.  

The bill was approved twice in the Senate and once in the House as amendments were added to the bill.  

Wallace said the work on the compromise bill could lead to other herbicides being possibly placed on a similar list. 

According to the bill, it would be up to the Arkansas State Plant Board to determine if the herbicide was sprayed egregiously, resulting in "significant off-target crop damage."

Money collected through those penalties would be split between Arkansas State Plant Board scholarship programs and the University of Arkansas Cooperative Extension Office.

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