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temeculagrassgators
07-07-2010, 01:55 AM
Well today i was fined by the county for not having my applicators license:( I have a $1,736.74 fine over my head right now. Just because i have three customers that i do pest control services for, i wouldn't think i would need to get a applicators license for three houses! Not like i advertised for pest control. So what should i say in court? Or what should i do from this point? Thanks for your help
-Tyler

mark123
07-07-2010, 07:23 AM
Well, as a guy that pays for his insurance, licensing and taxes all I can say is it serves you right. Now go pay your fine and get licensed or quit offering services you shouldn't offer. You get no sympathy for doing wrong.

Steve
07-07-2010, 01:21 PM
Tyler,

Sorry about all that happening. How did this all come about? Did you just get pulled over by the cops and then they ticketed you?

Or how did the county fine you?

I think a lot of members just don't understand how this works and what the risks are. The more you can tell us the better so we can all learn.

temeculagrassgators
07-07-2010, 03:50 PM
Mark123; I have my business license for the city and county i also have my insurance. But i agree with you i should have got my applicators license. Business license and pesticide license are two different things.
Steve; Originally what happened was the police were called when i was servicing a customer. The neighbor next door called them. They showed up and waited for a county official to come out. The neighbor complained that i was making to much noise at 8:45 AM and he was going to give me a noise ordinance fine and asked for my licensing and i gave him a copy of my business license and he saw i had a pesticide spray in my truck and he said do you have a applicators license and i told him no so he dropped the noise ordinance ticket and gave me the one for using pesticide without a applicators license. :eek:

CheapNEasy
07-07-2010, 05:41 PM
How were you applying the product? Were you tank spraying or bottle/pump spraying? Maybe you were "Doing the customer a favor" spraying chemicals they purchased for them? I dont know what to tell ya, I dont know what your laws are, some places you only need to acquire a license if you are "misting" rather than "spraying". Do your research, know your laws, if you were at fault bite the bullet and learn from your mistakes. But there could be a loop hole to save you some cash to get the proper license to preform these services with no problem.

mark123
07-07-2010, 05:46 PM
Mark123; I have my business license for the city and county i also have my insurance. But i agree with you i should have got my applicators license. Business license and pesticide license are two different things. ...
Yes, I understand as I have my pesticide license for PA. I'm not sure where you are located but here you can only do your own property without a pesticide license. This applies to fertilizers with crab grass or grub control also, not just spray. Every state has different rules.

Right now I pay for insurance to cover pesticide application, which is only a few bucks over regular business insurance per year, the test for licensing costs $50 and yearly renewal is something like $40 . Total cost is probably about $150 for the year for adding pesticide coverage and licensing. As you can see, not being licensed doesn't save anything. You eventually get caught.

Becoming licensed opens up a whole lot of opportunities. Maintaining your credits to keep your license active really teaches you a lot about safety, new products, new problems with old products, legalities and so much more.

I hope I didn't come off as being too much of a jerk. :p

temeculagrassgators
07-07-2010, 06:03 PM
CheapNEasy I was tank spraying i have tank that goes on my back. I don't know much on all the pesticide stuff i was only doing it for three customers it wasn't a big part of my business. I was in the wrong i looked up the county laws and i do need a applicators license if i am applying it to other peoples homes. So i guess i have to "bite the bullet" on this one.
mark123 Well after everything settles i am going to get my applicators license then i can expand that part of my business. Mark so i need additional insurance to spray pesticide on top of the insurance that i already have? You didn't come off as a jerk i just thought that you figured i was an illegal not paying my taxes and that i didn't have my business license. But its a learning experience for me.

mark123
07-07-2010, 06:18 PM
... Mark so i need additional insurance to spray pesticide on top of the insurance that i already have? You didn't come off as a jerk i just thought that you figured i was an illegal not paying my taxes and that i didn't have my business license. But its a learning experience for me.
I'm sure it depends on your location. Here I must have a statement on my insurance that says "Coverage applies to the use of pesticides". It's only a few more dollars per year for the extra coverage (not sure of the exact amount) it may even be already included in your policy. Ask your insurance agent. I pay $525 per year for business insurance including pesticide coverage.

temeculagrassgators
07-07-2010, 06:29 PM
mark123 I will give my agent a call tomorrow to see how much it is. I pay $763.00 a year. But that might include pesticides but I don't think it does. Thanks for your help Mark!!

Steve
07-08-2010, 11:17 PM
I have a $1,736.74 fine over my head right now.

How does all this work now? Will you have to go to court or do you send in a check to pay the fine? Were there any other strings attached to this at all? Like do you have to do anything else besides pay the ticket?

SuperiorPower
07-09-2010, 10:44 AM
Tyler,

I have only one suggestion. DON"T WAIT to get your license. Get it before your court date. Or at the very least, start working on it. If the judge sees that you are making an effort to get it and are working towards that, they may be nicer. If you go tell the judge, I will get it later, they may think you are trying to skip out and "get by" without it.

temeculagrassgators
07-09-2010, 12:53 PM
Steve I have no idea how it works out. I go to court on Monday The 12th. I'm going to see if i can do community service in trade or pay a fine and do community service?? I have no idea yet but i will tell everyone after court i go at 10:30 AM
SuperiorPower I go to court on Monday so there is no way i can get my applicators license by then. I can ask the judge if i show him proof within the next month or so will he drop the fine or something??

rom818
07-09-2010, 01:58 PM
Steve I have no idea how it works out. I go to court on Monday The 12th. I'm going to see if i can do community service in trade or pay a fine and do community service?? I have no idea yet but i will tell everyone after court i go at 10:30 AM
SuperiorPower I go to court on Monday so there is no way i can get my applicators license by then. I can ask the judge if i show him proof within the next month or so will he drop the fine or something??


Wait! What kind of pesticides were you using? If the only think you're using is stuff anyone can get at Homedepot or Lowes, then there's nothing they can do.

temeculagrassgators
07-09-2010, 04:33 PM
rom818 I was using Termidor SC. But i don't get what your trying to say? Please explain a little more. It will help me out!!
Thanks
Tyler

mark123
07-09-2010, 06:47 PM
Wait! What kind of pesticides were you using? If the only think you're using is stuff anyone can get at Homedepot or Lowes, then there's nothing they can do.
Where do you get this information. I can't speak for where you live but in PA this is completely false.

Steve
07-09-2010, 09:33 PM
Is it worthwhile bringing a lawyer to court for this?

Is there a mandatory court appearance or is it optional only if you want to fight the ticket?

temeculagrassgators
07-09-2010, 10:50 PM
mark123 yeah i have no idea where that came from.
Steve it's optional. If i want to fight it i can request another court date. But on Monday i am going to talk to the judge and see his insight and what not. If i think i need a lawyer i will get one. But if he drops the fine i will just pay it. I was in the wrong either way. But we will see on Monday.

rom818
07-10-2010, 06:08 AM
I'm pretty sure that if you're spraying products that you can buy at do-it-yourself places like Lowe's you're not breaking any laws. But if I were to go get a commercial product then I would have to have a license.

mark123
07-10-2010, 08:04 AM
I'm pretty sure that if you're spraying products that you can buy at do-it-yourself places like Lowe's you're not breaking any laws. But if I were to go get a commercial product then I would have to have a license.
Not unless your only doing your own yard.

majoe7
07-10-2010, 11:07 AM
Mark is right, also if the customers gives you a gallon of Weed B Gone, Round Up or Lawn Fert. and asks you to treat their lawn and you don’t charge them for a service then you can get away with it. It’s called a loophole in the system. You could increase the cost of the lawn cutting service to offset the no charge of the spray service. Have the customer purchase the product and next time you are asked if you are getting paid for spraying you simple say no, it ‘s the customers product, I’m just applying it for them. DO YOU REALLY WANT TO GO THIS ROUTE? A lot of small business owners take this way instead of spending the money to do it right. I don’t offer any spray service due to the fact that this is a part time job and I don’t have time. If I was to offer a spray service I would recommend the way Andy(Picframer) and Steve(Stout) and others are doing it and go by the way of Natures Magic. It's organic and from what I have read in their post and website you don’t need a license from the Fed. Govt or your Local Govt. ? I would get with them and discuss it. I’ve read where they have made it a very profitable business decision and a great choice.
Good luck on your court date and be Honest with the Judge and don’t try to play any games. You are right on track to ask if you can reduce the fine due to it being your first offense and/or community service to lower the amount of the fine.

Once again Good Luck.
John

stevef1201
07-10-2010, 02:54 PM
Majoe7 that loophole was closed by most localities about mmm 20 years ago. sorry. If you use chemicals, unlicensed you will pay the fine. Here it starts at 5 grand for the first 10 grand for the second. The third time is a felony and will get you 18 months in prison

majoe7
07-10-2010, 07:22 PM
"All states have pesticide licensing of some type. California is very strict as is Florida. For the most part they (Fl) aren't looking to fine anybody, just get them licensed. Still, politics play a very large role in how these laws are written. In Florida the pest control industry is better organized than most of the green industry so it reflects and roadblocks are thrown in such as the three year period a lawn maintenance worker must wait before he can take the <b>Limited Commercial Landscape exam.</b>
The Yard Man exemption in Florida is interesting. As stated before if the customer purchases the product, you can apply it using the customers equipment. This will allow you to apply weed and feed products, treat lawns for chinch bugs, fire ants, fungi, etc. It applies to residential accounts only, and you cannot advertise that you provide this service. It's a good deal because it allows you to help out a customer without breaking the law. I don't think it can have a significant impact on your bottom line though since you really cannot solicit or advertise this service to your customers.
Fl. is also now fineing first offenders, a departure from the previous warning letters and cease and desists they originally did.
They also just hired 4 new inspectors that will concentrate on the maintenance industry.
Stay Green!"


This is from Bob Kessler who offers a course to help you get your Pest Control license. Here is his web site for you to check it out.
http://www.bobkesslerceu.com

John

temeculagrassgators
07-10-2010, 09:54 PM
majoe7 & stevef1201 Thanks for the good information! I live in CA so i hope i don't get prison time???:eek: But this is my first time getting ticketed for it. So we will see how everything goes! Thank you to everyone that is giving me tips and facts!!
-Tyler

temeculagrassgators
07-12-2010, 03:05 PM
Today I went to court. Found out it is a VERY serious crime. I plead guilty and asked for community service. The fine was dropped to $627.29 and i received 23.5 hours of community service for a non-profit organization of my choice must be completed in 90 days from today. The three house that i service with the pest control i will be calling them and telling them i can no longer service them (in the pest control field). Happy out come i guess? The fine i will pay over time (three months) so around 210.00 a month. So yeah my advice is not to apply pesticides if you don't have a applicators license!

mark123
07-12-2010, 04:32 PM
Chalk it up as an educational expense. Are you still planning to get your applicator's license? What will you do for community service?

It really is a serious issue. Just think of it this way, some guys that apply illegally never find out until sombody gets poisoned.

majoe7
07-12-2010, 09:35 PM
Tyler,

I'm glad that your day went well. It seems that the Judge was in a favorable mood for being a serious crime. Less learned and a BIG savings to your wallet. Do it right and enjoy the rest of your day.

John

Steve
07-13-2010, 01:23 AM
The fine was dropped to $627.29 and i received 23.5 hours of community service for a non-profit organization of my choice must be completed in 90 days from today.

WOW! I had no idea it would get that involved!

If anyone else reading this is in the same boat as you and about to go to court, do you feel looking back, it would have been worthwhile bringing an attorney or no?

temeculagrassgators
07-17-2010, 04:14 PM
mark123 Yeah i still plan on getting my applicators license. I have already started my community service. I have done 9 hours at a rescue shelter for animals and i plan on working with habitat for humanity.
majoe7 I was very thankful to the judge. He understood where i was coming from but he got his point across..
Steve I say no only because he dropped my fine and i was a 100% guilty..

thanks for everyones support and info!

-Tyler

Steve
07-18-2010, 03:52 AM
Is there any way you will be able to use your community service time to promote your business at all?

Can you do things like park cleanups? Or something where you can put a sign up when you are done or meet others in your area that might need lawn care?

The Cleaning Doctor
07-18-2010, 09:42 AM
Probably will not have much public contact but you can still wear your shirts. Just a subtle way without offending someone. Oh and be sure to park your lettered truck out front.

temeculagrassgators
07-18-2010, 09:45 PM
Steve At the shelter i had to use there volunteer shirt. But when i go help habitat for humanity i will wear my company shirt..
The Cleaning Doctor Yeah when i go to the job sites for habitat for humanity thats what i plan on doing:)

picframer
07-18-2010, 10:04 PM
Is there any way you will be able to use your community service time to promote your business at all?

Can you do things like park cleanups? Or something where you can put a sign up when you are done or meet others in your area that might need lawn care?

It's a serious offence here also, we are a chemical free city yet some of the national companies are still here. Last Friday, Saturday were heavy rain, ideal time to spray, emails were pouring in asking if we could deal with chinch bug which we can, anyhow these nationals stay out of the city as by-law enforcement is around.

I was spraying a place for chinch bug, about 40,000 sq/ft when one of these national companies pulled in to the lot next door, it wasn't 10 min when by-law enforcement arrived, I suspect someone called as they (homeowners) are all on wells, anyhow we were both checked, they take a sample from your sprayer back to their vehicle for on site testing, I passed as always, buddy next door was not so fortunate, $1,500 fine, sceized his vehicle and had it towed. He will get it back after the court date which is generally pretty quick.

It doesn't matter what the stores sell up until the end of the year, the homeowner can generally get away with it however if a company applies a chemical and the boys come along, you are in deep crap and they do not fool around.

picframer
07-18-2010, 10:07 PM
Today I went to court. Found out it is a VERY serious crime. I plead guilty and asked for community service. The fine was dropped to $627.29 and i received 23.5 hours of community service for a non-profit organization of my choice must be completed in 90 days from today. The three house that i service with the pest control i will be calling them and telling them i can no longer service them (in the pest control field). Happy out come i guess? The fine i will pay over time (three months) so around 210.00 a month. So yeah my advice is not to apply pesticides if you don't have a applicators license!

I am curious what the issue with the lawns is and did you look into Organic solutions?

temeculagrassgators
07-18-2010, 11:11 PM
picframer Thats crazy! I didn't get my vehicle seized thankfully. What do you mean "I am curious what the issue with the lawns is.."? Yeah i looked into organic spray and i really like it. I think it would be a great ad on to the business.

picframer
07-19-2010, 06:15 AM
picframer Thats crazy! I didn't get my vehicle seized thankfully. What do you mean "I am curious what the issue with the lawns is.."? Yeah i looked into organic spray and i really like it. I think it would be a great ad on to the business.

I guess my question is what was or is the issue with the lawn requiring you to use chemicals?

As for having vehicles seized, it doesn't stop there, I can't work within 20 feet of any lake or stream without an environmental permit, if I do and they come by, all equipment at the site is seized, it's pretty serious and could put a company even my size out of business, fines can be as high as $100,000 depending on the location and what was being done, say for example a rock wall along the ocean as a brake for erosion.

temeculagrassgators
07-19-2010, 12:15 PM
picframer The lawn didn't need chemicals. It was the house. It was for pesticides ie ants and spiders.

$100,000.00!! WOW that is crazy. I am for sure getting my applicators license. I'm already in the process:)

TaylorsCornerLLC
07-19-2010, 06:33 PM
Glad to see you didn't get slammed by the system.. I do know that in CT and VT you CAN NOT apply any pesticide, regardless of what type or where you bought it on someone elses property besides your own. I usually do grub ex, and a weed and feed on my grandmothers lawn every year, but refused to bring my lettered truck to her house and do it, for the same reason you were fined. In CT, i know that the pesticide liscenses are also very specific, limiting your oppertunities..

picframer
07-19-2010, 07:23 PM
picframer The lawn didn't need chemicals. It was the house. It was for pesticides ie ants and spiders.

$100,000.00!! WOW that is crazy. I am for sure getting my applicators license. I'm already in the process:)

How did they even find out? Someone must have called.

temeculagrassgators
07-19-2010, 08:12 PM
picframer Like i said the original reason code enforcement came out was because of a noise disturbance witch was me working at 8:45 in the morning at a customers house.. And they came out and saw the pesticides in the truck and asked for all my license. And i didn't have my applicators license. so that was the reason i got cited...

MAKLawnCutter
07-22-2010, 12:47 AM
That sucks :(

I actually got 'checked' today. I was trimming palms when this "code enforcement" truck shows up. Figured he was checking codes on the irrigation that was put in across the street. Nope, walked right upto me, asked for my lisensing and all of my information. Then said he had to see if i had "chemicals."

I had pissed off a group of Corporate Landscaper Douche Bags about an hour earlier, it was like Middle School "You need a real trailer and equipment." Told them atleast i OWN my trailer and equipment...

Anyways, i cracked open by big ol' bucket of Vinegar and Salt, pulled the bag of hot pepper flakes, lavender oil, rosemary and 4 boxes of salt. Had 8 bottles of vinegar in the bed under the clippings. The guy cracked up. Then i showed him my portable burner for heating up my 3qt SS pan for making mixtures. He shook my hand and got into his truck and headed out.

If you need any help with ORGANICS, let me know, i can lend a hand.

Matt

temeculagrassgators
07-22-2010, 11:31 AM
MAKLawnCutter Hey Matt, I would like to learn more on the organic spray.. What does it stop? And you have your applicators license right?
Thanks

temeculagrassgators
07-30-2010, 05:19 PM
Whoooop Whooop.......So i am done with all of my community service hours! I ended up just doing them all at the shelter... Habitat humanity didn't have much projects going o around here so i stuck with the shelter witch was cool. So many animals!! Go out and adopt a animal if you guys can! Matt, thank you i got your message with the organic spray info.. Now all i have to do is finish paying the fine! Thanks for everyone support:)