Update on Pesticide Licenses
With all pesticide training and testing clinics cancelled and all testing suspended for the time being, the IL Dept of Ag is taking the necessary steps to assure that we have licensed pesticide applicators and operators for the spring 2020 season. Here is what we know:
1. If you are currently a licensed applicator/operator and recently took your exams before the testing was suspended, it may take a while for you to get your renewal letter from IDA. IDA has limited staffing until further notice. But rest assured you will be considered as licensed for the upcoming season and eventually the paperwork will catch up with you when normal operations at IDA resume.
2. If you were re-testing this year because your license expired on Dec 31, 2019 and you DID NOT take your exams yet, IDA has renewed your license until December 31, 2020. But you will have to re-test later in 2020 or early 2021 in order to renew your license for the next 3 year cycle. You will not have to pay any kind of "one year" license fee or complete renewal paperwork for the one year extension. IDA will work to update their computer systems to ensure your license is reflected as valid until 12/31/2020. Again, this could take a bit of time until full staffing resumes at IDA.
3. If you have new employees who were hoping to get certified in general standards this year but didn't get a chance to take the exam, IDA is developing a contingency plan for operators. For those needing the category test, such as Field Crops, in order to become a new certified applicator, IDA hopes to be able to re-schedule testing clinics as soon as feasible for the pesticide applicator categories. More information will come on this.
We appreciate all IDA is doing to assist applicators during this time. Do not worry! IDA plans to issue a Fact Sheet on the licensing changes being implemented and any other regulatory program modifications due to COVID-19. We've also been working with IDA to develop a FAQ with more guidance on using dicamba in 2020 to help applicators better understand the application and recordkeeping requirements.
Please be assured that it is going to work out; more details are forthcoming and IFCA will keep you informed.