The number of bills that would restrict pesticide use has decreased considerably in the Oregon Legislature due to the April 9 out-of-committee deadline. Senate committees did not push forward any bills relating to pesticides, while two such House bills remain in play.
House Bill 2619 would ban the use of chlorpyrifos in the state of Oregon. It currently is in the House Rules Committee and will remain alive until the end of the session. Meanwhile, House Bill 3058 also would ban chlorpyrifos, but has been amended with a requirement that the Oregon Department of Agriculture first collect data on the use of the chemical. It is in the Joint Ways and Means Committee.
OAN and other agricultural groups have successfully petitioned the committees to remove any restrictions on the neonicotinoid class of chemicals from these bills. The original HB 3058 would have declared neonics a restricted-use pesticide, while the original HB 2619 would have banned them.
Chlorpyrifos is currently the subject of a federal court battle. A three-judge panel of the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ordered the EPA to ban its sale last August. The administration appealed. According to Oregonians for Food and Shelter, there are few if any alternatives to the chemical for controlling the pests that are unique to some crops.