Section 487.0615, Florida Statutes 2003
487.0615 Pesticide Review Council.--
(1)(a) There is created within the department the Pesticide Review Council. The purpose of the council is to advise the Commissioner of Agriculture regarding the sale, use, and registration of pesticides and to advise government agencies, including the State University System, with respect to those activities related to their responsibilities regarding pesticides. The council shall serve as the statewide forum for the coordination of pesticide-related activities to eliminate duplication of effort and maximize protection of the environment of the state and the health of the public.
(b) The council shall consist of 11 scientific members as follows: a scientific representative from the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, a scientific representative from the Department of Environmental Protection, a scientific representative from the Department of Health, and a scientific representative from the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, each to be appointed by the respective agency; the dean of research of the Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences of the University of Florida; and six members to be appointed by the Governor. The six members to be appointed by the Governor must be a pesticide industry representative, a representative of an environmental group, a hydrologist, a toxicologist, a scientific representative from one of the five water management districts rotated among the five districts, and a grower representative from a list of three persons nominated by the statewide grower associations. Each member shall be appointed for a term of 4 years and shall serve until a successor is appointed. A vacancy shall be filled for the remainder of the unexpired term.
(c) In conducting its meetings, the council shall use accepted rules of procedure. A majority of the members of the council constitutes a quorum for all purposes, and an act by a majority of such quorum at any meeting constitutes an official act of the council. The secretary shall keep a complete record of each meeting which must show the names of members present and the actions taken. These records must be kept on file with the department, and these records and other documents about matters within the jurisdiction of the council are subject to inspection by members of the council.
(d) The members of the council shall meet and organize by electing a chair, a vice chair, and a secretary whose terms shall be for 1 year each. Council officers may not serve consecutive terms.
(e) The council shall meet at the call of its chair, at the request of a majority of its members, at the request of the department, or at such time as a public health or environmental emergency arises.
(2) The council shall have the power and duty to:
(a) Recommend, based upon review of state pesticide program needs, appropriate scientific studies on any registered pesticide when substantive preliminary data indicate that the pesticide could pose an unreasonably adverse effect on the environment or human health. The recommendations may include using available services of state agencies or of the State University System to conduct such scientific studies or may recommend that these agencies seek funding for this purpose. When the council recommends a study, it must support legislative budget requests for funding needed to conduct the study. The council may also conduct scientific studies if specific funding is provided to the department or other governmental agency by the Legislature.
(b) Make recommendations, subject to a majority vote, directly to the Commissioner of Agriculture for actions to be taken with respect to the sale or use of a pesticide which the council has reviewed. When such review is performed in conjunction with the registration of a pesticide, the council shall comply with the time framework of the registration process pursuant to chapter 120 and as implemented by department rules.
(c) Provide advice or information to appropriate governmental agencies, including the State University System, with respect to those activities related to their responsibilities regarding pesticides. However, confidential data received from the United States Environmental Protection Agency or the registrant shall be confidential and exempt from the provisions of s. 119.07(1); and it is unlawful for any member of the council to use the data for his or her own advantage or to reveal the data to the general public.
(d) Review biological and alternate controls to replace or reduce the use of pesticides.
(e) Consider, at the request of any member, the development of appropriate advice or recommendations on a pesticide when substantive preliminary data indicate that the pesticide could pose an unreasonably adverse effect on the environment or human health.
(f) Assist the department in the review of registered pesticides which are selected for special review based upon potential environmental or human health effects. The department shall consult with the council in the special review process. This process must include, but need not be limited to, selecting pesticides for special review, providing periodic updates to the council on preliminary findings as a special review progresses, and formulating final recommendations on any pesticide on which a special review has been conducted.
(3) The council shall submit an annual report, no later than November 1 of each year, to the Commissioner of Agriculture, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, and the President of the Senate, containing a record of the council's activities, recommendations regarding any pesticide reviewed by the council, and recommendations related to any other duty of the council and its purpose.
(4) The council is defined as a "substantially interested person" and has standing under chapter 120 in any proceeding conducted by the department relating to the registration of a pesticide under this chapter. The standing of the council shall in no way prevent individual members of the council from exercising standing in these matters.
(5) Members of the council shall receive no compensation for their services, but are entitled to be reimbursed for per diem and travel expenses as provided in s. 112.061.
History.--ss. 9, 11, ch. 83-310; s. 18, ch. 84-338; s. 1, ch. 86-116; ss. 4, 6, 7, ch. 88-304; s. 3, ch. 91-20; s. 5, ch. 91-429; ss. 17, 37, 38, ch. 92-115; s. 14, ch. 94-233; s. 14, ch. 94-356; s. 324, ch. 96-406; s. 1124, ch. 97-103; s. 232, ch. 99-8; s. 222, ch. 99-245; s. 21, ch. 2000-154.