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Agriculture Today

Structural Pest Control program news

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September 12, 2012 | 3,007 views | Post a comment

AUSTIN -- Recent cost-cutting initiatives have made it possible for the Texas Department of Agriculture to reduce fees for its Structural Pest Control program. As a result of improved efficiencies, Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples announced in a Sept. 6 press release a reduction in Structural Pest Control program licensing fees for the next fiscal year and ordered fee refunds to be issued for the past year.

The state budget passed by the 82nd Texas Legislature in 2011 resulted in a 40-percent reduction in state general revenue appropriations for Texas Department of Agriculture programs and services. As a result, Staples implemented a full reorganization and restructure of the agency and the way its services are delivered. This reorganization yielded the elimination of more than 100 positions and a reduction from 10 divisions to six.

These cost-cutting measures and ongoing fiscal responsibility have enabled the Texas Department of Agriculture to reduce costs for the pest control program and will refund a portion of the past year’s license fees. Refunds are estimated to exceed $350,000. Refund checks will go out in early September. Additionally, businesses, applicators, and technicians can expect to save about 20 percent on Structural Pest Control program license fees for the fiscal year as of Sept. 1.

The Texas Department of Agriculture’s Structural Pest Control program licenses and regulates pest-management professionals who apply pesticides in and around building structures. License fees fund the Texas Department of Agriculture inspections to ensure licensed applicators meet required consumer safety and operating standards.

License fee refunds will be issued for the difference between the new reduced license fee and the fee amount paid during the past fiscal year, Sept. 1, 2011, through Aug. 31, 2012. The department will refund the portion of the license fee that exceeds the amount needed to operate the Structural Pest Control program.

The responsibility for structural pest control regulation in Texas was transferred to the Texas Department of Agriculture by the Legislature on Sept. 1, 2007.

For more information about the Texas Department of Agriculture’s Structural Pest Control program, visit http://bit.ly/TZasC2.

For questions regarding refunds, call 866-943-9186 or email SPCRefunds@TexasAgriculture.gov.

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