The Department of Pesticide Regulation on Thursday published a report examining options for increasing or redesigning altogether the mill assessment on pesticide sales.
DPR paid a private consulting firm to solicit input from stakeholders and draft the recommendations. California Farm Bureau Administrator Jim Houston has lambasted the approach, arguing that hiring an intermediary puts a barrier between the agency and the public, and that DPR paid the firm to find a path to a predetermined outcome.
According to DPR Director Julie Henderson, “stakeholder consultation is critical to informing the structure and implementation of necessary long-term funding for the department.”

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Crowe LLP is taking feedback through the end of May to inform its final recommendations to DPR. The firm will host a webinar and Q&A sessions next month.
The Legislature funded DPR to commission the study after lawmakers rejected its proposal to overhaul the mill fees. The agency hopes to incorporate a tiered mill structure, raising fees on pesticides deemed hazardous.