Department of Pesticide Regulation

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June 21, 2002   ENF 2002-023
County Agricultural Commissioners  



Several issues have caused us to review our ongoing business processes used to implement the pesticide regulatory program in California. These recent issues include: implementing the new effectiveness evaluation process which will require additional Department of Pesticide Regulation (DPR) resources, followup to the Legislative Analyst Office's report on DPR's oversight of County Agricultural Commissioner's (CACs) programs, improved information databases, and continued budget challenges. This review of business processes led us to make a modification in how we operate and interact in the program.

Past policy has been for you to submit all moderate and serious Notices of Proposed Action (NOPA) to your Senior Pesticide Use Specialist Liaison (Senior) for review prior to sending it to the respondent. Effective immediately, you are no longer being asked to do this. Please use the Enforcement Guidelines and Hearing Officer Sourcebook to guide you in the preparation of your NOPA. Your Senior Pesticide Use Specialist Liaison will, of course, continue to be a resource if you have questions about your investigation or case preparation. Assisting you with NOPA review will now be at your discretion.

It is not our intent to diminish DPR's level of support for your investigations and case preparations. The CACs have had administrative civil penalty authority for more than 15 years, and it is our hope that this experience will permit us to better direct our resources now where needed most. We anticipate these changes will reduce duplication of effort, reduce delays in processing enforcement actions, and increase efficiency to more effectively implement the new effectiveness evaluation process forthcoming.

Please continue to submit enforcement action information on closed cases as instructed in ENF 01-36 for inclusion in the Enforcement Tracking Database. In all cases, please send a copy of the final NOPA to the Enforcement Branch Regional Office when it is sent out to the respondent. If it is a structural case, a copy of the NOPA should also be sent to the Structural Pest Control Board. These instructions supercede those in ENF 97-50 and any other prior instructions that may be in conflict.

Additionally, as most of you have heard, Jerry Benincasa will not be contracting with DPR to provide hearing officer/case preparation support next fiscal year. In fact, effective June 18, 2002, we have had to terminate Jerry's contract due to insufficient funds. Over the course of his contract, Jerry heard 14 hearings, reviewed 19 NOPAs and facilitated 9 workshops to help improve our hearing and case presentation process. Obviously, with this loss, we now have another resource issue to address how this service may continue in the future. I plan to discuss it with you at your upcoming area group meetings.

If you have any questions, please contact me or your Senior Pesticide Use Specialist.

Original Signature by:
Scott T. Paulsen, Chief
Pesticide Enforcement Branch
(916) 324-4100


cc:  Mr. Daniel J. Merkley, Agricultural Commissioner Liaison

1001 I Street  ·   P.O. Box 4015  ·  Sacramento, California 95812-4015  ·
A Department of the California Environmental Protection Agency