This is what we now have to deal with in NYS for our pesticide certifications. The following is taken directly out of "The Grapevine" which is the official publication of the New York State Turf and Landscape Association. I would NOT want to have been Tom DeChillo at the annual conference in White Plains this year. "Pesticide applicators pay various fees to the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation for applicator examinations, permits, and business registrations. In 2003 the DEC will be charging significantly more than they have in the past. The fee for taking ther certification exam (this is the exam one must pass in NY state before you can legally apply restricted pesticides) will increase from $10 to $50 and the certification will be good for 5 years instead of 6 years. I"n addition to the basic exam, applicators must be certified in specific categories that relate to the pesticides they want to apply. For instance, most landscape maintenance companies would need to have someone certified in 3A, which covers ornamentals and turf. These commercial applicators used to pay $15 for every category they were certified in, every 3 years. Now they must pay $375 for their first category and $125 for each additional category, every 5 years. Businesses also must pay a registration fee of $450 every 3 years, an increase from the old $50 annual fee. The cost of commercial permits will increase from $50 to $300. This new fee structure will make for hefty charges to many landscape maintenance businesses. In defense of the new charges, Tom Lynch, Supervisor Pesticide Compliance Section of NYS DEC, says they are long overdue. The new fees are comparable to fees in surrounding states and help support pesticide education and regulation. What does this mean for the homeowner? Landscape businesses that apply pesticides will have to recover these costs from their customers. They may also cut the fees they pay by being more judicious in how many and which staff they sponsor for commercial applicator certification.