News and Information
2017 MDARD Inspections & Violations
Dear Michigan Golf Course Representatives,
Since our last communication in May 2015, the Pesticide and Plant Pest Management Division (PPPMD) again takes the opportunity to familiarize golf course personnel with regulatory requirements for the commercial use of pesticides in and around golf courses in Michigan, and to provide an update of our inspection activities. Please note that a “pesticide” includes any substance or mixture of substances intended to control pests and that Regulation 637, Rule 4 states that a pesticide shall be used in a manner that is consistent with its label.
As of June 2017, PPPMD:
- Has completed 270 compliance inspections at golf courses.
- Found 158 (59%) non-compliance issues, for which a Stop Prohibited Conduct
- Orders (SPCO) were issued. In many cases, the SPCO is followed up with a
- warning letter and/or a Notice of Intent with an administrative fine.
- Issued 124 warning letters.
- Issued 51 administrative fines exceeding $25,000.
The Natural Resources and Environmental Protection Act, Act 451, Part 83, Section 8314, Pesticide Control, states, “A person shall not apply a pesticide for a commercial purpose or in the course of his or her employment unless that person is either a certified or registered applicator”.
There are a few exceptions, including persons who are not holding themselves out as being in the business of applying pesticides and are also using a general-use ready-to-use pesticide (a pesticide that is applied directly from its original container consistent with label directions, such as an aerosol insecticide or rodenticide bait pack that does not require mixing or loading prior to application). It should be noted that “ready-to-use” pesticides do not include pesticides applied through a granular spreader.
In the course of his or her employment, all golf course employees who use pesticides must meet all the following requirements:
Applicators must pass Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development
(MDARD) examinations to become certified or registered. All commercial applicators take a Core exam, which covers general issues such as laws, labeling, and personal protective equipment. In addition, persons obtaining a certification credential will take one or more category-specific examinations that tests their knowledge of pests, methods of application, calibration and other issues that are specific to that type of application. There are categories for turf, ornamental, and aquatic pest management applications that are applicable to golf course operations. Other categories include structural pest control, mosquito pest control, and right-of-way pest control.
MDARD has also partnered with Metro Institute to provide more choices for pesticide applicator exam locations. Metro Institute offers computer-based testing that can be scheduled at a date and time that fits your schedule. For more information on this testing option, visit our website at www.michigan.gov/mdardpestcert and select “Examination Process.”
To prepare for the exams, study manuals are available from Michigan State University Cooperative Extension (MSUE) and can be obtained through a local MSUE office or ordered through the MSUE website www.michigan.gov/pestexam, and then clicking on the link titled “Where to Obtain Study Materials.” Once you have studied the manuals and are prepared to take the certification exams, you can register for an exam session using the above link.
In addition to the certification requirement, Regulation 636, Rule 15, outlines
recordkeeping requirements for the use of pesticides on golf courses. The recordkeeping requirement for each pesticide application includes:
(a) The name and EPA registration number of the pesticide applied.
(b) Concentration of the pesticide applied.
(c) The amount of pesticide end use dilution applied.
(d) The target pest, purpose, or crop site.
(e) The date the pesticide was applied.
(f) The address or location of pesticide application.
(g) The method and the rate of application.
The notification and posting requirements for pesticide applications on golf courses are contained in Regulation 637, Rule 11(3) and state:
All broadcast, foliar, or space pesticide applications that are made to public or private golf courses by a commercial applicator shall be in compliance with all of the following provisions:
(a) Applicators shall notify users of, or visitors to, the golf course in accordance withall of the following requirements:
(i) Notification of pesticide application shall be provided on a poster or
placard that is constructed of all-weather material.
(ii) The poster or placard shall contain a general statement that from time to
time pesticides are in use in the management of turf and ornamental pests.
(iii) The poster or placard shall state that questions or concerns that arise in
relation to the pesticide application shall be directed to the golf course
superintendent or his or her designated representative.
(iv) The poster or placard shall state that, upon request, the superintendent
or his or her representative will supply the information specified in subdivision
(b) of this subrule.
(v) The poster or placard shall be displayed prominently in the pro shop,
locker rooms, or registration area.
(b) At the time of broadcast, foliar, or space pesticide application to golf course
property, the applicator shall post, on the first and tenth tees, in a conspicuous
place, a sign that states all of the following information:
(i) The date and time of application.
(ii) The common name of the pesticide applied.
(iii) The areas treated.
(iv) The label reentry precautions.
(v) The name of a person who may be contacted for further information.
(c) Posting requirements shall remain in effect until specific label reentry
requirements have been fulfilled.
You should also be aware that if you mix and load pesticides, other than in hand-held equipment, for over 10 days in a calendar year, you will be required to conduct the mixing and loading operation on a mix and load pad that complies with the requirements in Regulation 637, Rule 6.
Please be advised that violations of Act 451, Part 83 Pesticide Control, or rules
promulgated thereunder are misdemeanor offenses and are subject to administrative fines of up to $1,000 per count or court administered fines of up to $5,000 per count upon conviction in a court of law.
For additional information please visit our website at www.michigan.gov/mdardpest or contact MDARD at 1-800-292-3939.
Michael Stoliecki, Pesticide Section Manager
Pesticide & Plant Pest Management Div