February 25, 2003 firstname.lastname@example.org (410) 823-8684
Maryland Farm Service Agencies (FSA), a division of the USDA, are currently collecting loss estimates for agricultural structures damaged in last week’s storm. Once collected, the FSA will report this information to the federal government to determine Maryland’s eligibility to receive disaster relief. If you have reported damage, you could be eligible to receive monetary relief in the form of reconstruction cost-shares. If your business sustained damage to an agricultural structure in last week’s storm, please contact your county FSA office to report the damage.
Baltimore County and City 410-666-1188 Kent County 410-778-5353
Cecil County 410-398-4411 Queen Annes County 410 758-1671
Carroll County 40-848-6696 Talbot County 410-758-1671
Harford County 410-838-6181 Montgomery County 301-590-2855
Howard County 410-381-4550 P.G. County 301-574-5162
If the phone number you need is not listed here, please call the MNLA office at 410-823-8684. You may also get this information through the FSA website www.fsa.usda.gov. Click on Local Offices.
Due to the significant Maryland state budget deficit, the University of Maryland has been asked to cut its budget, and may likely be forced to accomplish this reduction through a down-sizing of its labor-force. The impact to the members of the MNLA would be further reduction in the number of extension agents and industry support personnel that would be hired and retained. The Cooperative Extension program has already had many of its open positions frozen in the last few years, placing a greater burden on the remaining personnel to serve fully the needs of our members.
The MNLA urges all members to contact your local delegated and senators to oppose further cutbacks to the University of Maryland. You may telephone, e-mail, or fax your representative. Go to the General Assembly website http://mlis.state.md.us. Click on find a legislator to directly contact your legislators.
There are currently several bills before the Maryland State Legislature that we have been following, along with the assistance of our lobbyist, American Joe Miedusiewski. If you would like to review the text of any of these bills, go to the MD General Assembly website: http://mlis.state.md.us. Click on bill info and status. Then type in the bill number with the format HB or SB followed by the bill number.
We welcome any input and comments you have regarding proposed legislation. Please contact the office with your feedback.
Senate Bill 617 – Concerning the Suspension of Enforcement of Nutrient Management Penalties
House Bill 503 – Concerning establishment of a Maryland Pesticide Advisory Council
Senate Bill 643 – Concerning Sales and Use Tax Exemptions on Ag Products
House Bill 1053 – Concerning the Increase of MD Sales and Use Tax Rate
Follow-Up on Legislation Previously Communicated
House Bill 80 – Concerning the applicability of Nutrient Management Plans.
Senate Bill 540 - Concerning Use and Access of Restricted Use Pesticide.
We will continue monitoring all proposed legislation to determine its impact on Maryland’s Green Industry. We will continue to keep you informed of all issues that may affect your business. We ask for your feed back in helping us to represent our industry. If you have comments or concern about any proposed legislation, please contact our office.
Contact your legislators: We encourage you to contact your local legislators to make them aware of how proposed legislation will affect your business. You can contact your legislators through via telephone, U.S. mail or e-mail. The MD General Assembly website (http://mlis.state.md.us) provides any contact information you need. You can even type in your zip code to find out who your representatives are. If you don’t have access to the web, and would like this information, please contact the office.
International Marketing Opportunities
The MNLA office has recently received information on two international horticulture events.
Plantarium - a Nursery Trade Fair, to be held in the Netherlands in August 2003. This event is billed as a “ specialized fair for the tree cultivation sector…” and expects attendees from 39 countries.
U.S. Demonstration Gardens Showcase and Trade Mission to Japan – sponsored by SUSTA and Food Export USA Northeast. You may opt to participate in the US display garden, or simply attend. The program includes a one-day showcase/trade show, followed by a trade mission to local nurseries and botanical gardens. The event is scheduled for September 8 – 12, 2003.
For more information of either of these events, please contact the MNLA office.
P.O. Box 726 -
Brooklandville, Maryland 21022