Seed Bills Stall in Texas Legislature

  • On May 18, 2017

On Monday, May 8, the Texas Legislature reached a critical point in its session: as of that date, bills filed but not passed out of a committee will not have enough time to be heard by the House. A number of bills of interest-both good and bad-were left pending:

  • HB 4222 would have placed the seed authority, currently with the state department of agriculture, to a certification agency within the purview of the Vice Chancellor of the College of Agriculture at Texas A&M University. The goal would be to create a seed certification agency (crop improvement association) for the purpose of performing those services more cost-efficiently.  The Chairman of the House Agriculture Committee indicated he will request an interim study.
  • HB 4118 would have limited the Agriculture Department to fee increases not-to-exceed 10-percent of the amount of the fee at the end of the preceding state fiscal year.
  • HB 1535 would have directed the Agriculture Department to prohibit the application of a neonicotinoid pesticide to the right-of-way of a public road or highway.
  • HB 2023 would have required GMO labeling of all food products.

All in all, it’s been a busier year than usual for the Texas seed industry.