Beekeeping in Vermont

Vermont State House in MontpelierAs many of you know, the Pollinator Protection Act, H706 has passed the Vermont House 112-29. It was taken up by the Senate Agriculture committee, and UVM Bee Lab director Samantha Alger and VBA past president Andrew Munkres both testified in support of the bill among others.  Last week the bill passed out of the Senate Agriculture committee 4-1 with a couple of changes from the House version.  Today the bill went to Senate appropriations and passed out of that committee this afternoon 6-0.

 Next it will be taken up by the full Senate and a floor vote is likely on Thursday or Friday.  Now is the time to contact your senators AGAIN to ensure their support of this bill.  This could be a game changer for honeybee health in Vemont, and we could use your help.


Let your Senator know that you would appreciate their vote for H706 and why.  Our goal is to get at least 20 Senators in support of the bill to gain a veto-proof majority.


The Senate Agriculture Committee changed the neonic phase out from 5 years to 7 years.  This would mean that neonics would be used until 2031 instead of 2029.  Five years is ample time to transition to non-neonic coated seeds, so we'd like to see the timeline changed back to 2029. Please feel free to mention that when you write to your Senator.  This is the same timeline as the New York Birds and Bees Act.


The other big change is to the exemption process, but at this point, we are planning to take up that fight when the bill goes back to the House for reconciliation between the House and Senate versions of the bill.


Thank you,

Andrew Munkres

VBA Past President