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Natural Resources Commission Preliminarily Adopts Invasive Plants Rule

On July 17th, at the Fort Harrison State Park in Indianapolis, the Natural Resources Commission passed the preliminary adoption of the Terrestrial Plant Rule (TPR) (https://www.in.gov/nrc/files/lsa18316_proposed.pdf).  This rule restricts the sale, distribution, and transport of 44 invasive plants, which were determined invasive based on scientific literature by the Indiana Invasive Species Council’s subcommittee, the Invasive Plant Advisory Committee (https://www.entm.purdue.edu/iisc/plantcommittee.php).

The current list was taken under advisement as those species with the greatest ecological threat.  If passed through the general assembly as it is written, amendments to the rule, i.e. the addition of callery pear or others, can occur after the bill is signed into law.

The Indiana Economic Development Corporation has provided an economic impact statement regarding the invasive plants rule (https://www.in.gov/nrc/files/lsa17-436_iedc.pdf), outlining the effects on small businesses.  In the letter, it is noted that regulatory flexibility in potential methods for small businesses to comply with the rule.  This will allow the growers options on how to best comply within their business model.  The nursery inspectors, from IDNR Division of Entomology and Plant Pathology, will be responsible for enforcing the invasive plants rule if signed into legislation.

The rule adoption timeline indicates public hearings occurring in November 2018, final adoption in January 2019, and submitted to the governor in March of 2019.  If the timeline is correct, this rule will become effective in April of 2019 (https://www.in.gov/nrc/files/lsa18316_timeline.pdf).

Public commenting is now available via mail or online at https://www.in.gov/nrc/2377.htm.

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