Recommendation to drop charges in Ag-Mart pesticide case — Business Management Daily: Free Reports on Human Resources, Employment Law, Office Management, Office Communication, Office Technology and Small Business Tax Business Management Daily

Recommendation to drop charges in Ag-Mart pesticide case

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Administrative Law Judge Joe Webster has recommended that the state drop all but 17 of the 369 charges of pesticide application violations against Florida-based Ag-Mart, reducing the company’s fines to $6,000 from nearly $185,000.

Ag-Mart was cited in 2005 for a slew of worker safety violations, including burning pesticide containers, failing to provide proper safety equipment for field workers and allowing workers to harvest crops too soon after chemicals were sprayed. Florida and North Carolina officials began investigating the company after three employees from the same labor camp in Florida gave birth to babies with severe birth defects.

Webster said he recommended dropping the charges because the North Carolina Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services failed to prove them.

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