Colleen Scherer, Managing Editor, Ag Professional  |   December 3, 2012

The Florida Association of Counties met in Sarasota, Fla., last week to talk about its legislative priorities in 2013 and to prepare for another battle with the Florida legislature over fertilizer restrictions in the state. At issue is each counties rights to regulate fertilizer restrictions in their own areas.

County commissioners from Florida’s 67 counties met at its Legislative Conference and heard warnings that lawmakers are expected in 2013 to curtail counties and cities from being able to restrict fertilizer use and sales in urban areas.

“We’ve been told it’s imminent,” Sarasota County commissioner Nora Patterson, a Republican, said of the potential legislation, according to the Herald Tribune.

As a member of the Florida Association of Counties’ board of directors, Patterson expressed her view that counties should have the right to regulate fertilizers as they see fit.

For the past three years, water and fertilizer issues have become more prominent in the state. The Herald Tribune reported that state lawmakers, with support from the landscaping industry and fertilizer retailers, have argued the state needs to set rules that are consistent from county to county to make it easier for people to follow. In addition, the Florida Association of Counties voted to make protecting fertilizer restrictions as one of its top three issues going into the 2013 Legislative Session.