Frequently Asked Questions
Nebraska Pesticide Applicator General Information
State Licensing Contact Information
What classifications of pesticide applicator licensing does Nebraska have?
Nebraska has three levels of licensing for pesticide applicators: Private, Commercial and Non-commercial.
Private Applicator Certification - Anyone who applies restricted use pesticides in an agricultural setting to their own property needs this level of licensing. Private Applicators may apply restricted use pesticides to properties owned by others as long as no compensation outside of an exchange of services.
Commercial Applicator Certification - Anyone who applies restricted use pesticides to the property of another in a for hire capacity needs this level of licensing; or applies pesticides to the structure or lawn of property owned by another, regardless of if the pesticide is restricted or general use. There are currently 14 categories and subcategories that a Commercial Applicator may be certified in.
Non-Commercial Applicator Certification - Anyone who applies restricted use pesticides to a commodity or property under the direct supervision or direction of their employer; or anyone performing outdoor vector control for a neighborhood or community. This level of licensing is strictly not-for-hire.
What categories of pesticide licensing does Nebraska have?
Nebraska has established the following categories for Commercial and Non-Commercial Certified Applicators. Applicators may be licensed in one or more of these areas depending on their scope of work. For a more detailed explanation of the categories please click here.
Category 01 - Ag Plant Pest Control
Category 01A - Soil Fumigation
Category 02 - Ag Animal Pest Control Category 03 - Forest Pest Control
Category 04 - Ornamental and Turf Pest Control - does not include applications to aquatic areas
Category 05 - Aquatic Pest Control
Category 05S - Sewer Root Control
Category 06 - Seed Treatment
Category 07 - Right of Way Pest Control
Category 08 - Structural and Health-Related Pest Control (residential or commercial)
Category 08W - Wood Destroying Organisms
Category 09 - Public Health Pest Control
Category 10 - Wood Preservation
Category 11 - Fumigation
Category 12 - Aerial Pest Control
Category 14 - Wildlife Damage Control
Demonstration and Research Subcategory
Does the state of Nebraska offer pesticide applicator reciprocity with other states?
Applicators that live outside the state of Nebraska may be eligible to obtain a Nebraska Pesticide Applicator License if those states have formed a reciprocal agreement with the Nebraska Department of Agriculture (NDA). Eligibility for applicators with licenses from other states or agencies may be granted on a case by case basis. Click here for more information about reciprocal licenses.
Nebraska Pesticide Applicator Certifications
How do I get my pesticide applicator license in Nebraska?
Private Applicator - To obtain certification to be a Private Applicator, you must complete one of the following:
- attend a private applicator training program - usually sponsored through your local extension office, or
- complete a self-study program through your local extension office, or
- pass the Private Applicator Exam administered by the Nebraska Department of Agriculture (NDA)
- The licensing fee for a Private Applicator is $25 for the three-year licensing cycle. Private Applicators must re-certify every three years. For more information on obtaining your initial certification contact your local extension agency.
Commercial and Non-Commercial Applicators - To obtain certification as either a Commercial (for-hire) or Non-Commercial (not-for-hire) applicator, you must:
- successfully pass the general standards exam and at least one category specific exam with a score of at lease 70%.
- The licensing fee is $90 for Commercial Applicators, there is no fee for Non-Commercial Applicators. Both Commercial and Non-Commercial Applicators must re-certify every three years.
Nebraska Pesticide Certification Renewals
Do I need continuing education to maintain my Nebraska pesticide applicator license?
No, the Nebraska Department of Agriculture only requires that all applicators be re-certified every three years.
Worker Protection Standard (WPS) FAQs
How does it work?
- $159 will train your whole staff for a year (up to 25 employees)
- Training can be completed as often as needed for up to 25 employees.
- Employees can watch the video course individually or all at once
- Certificates will be available for each worker at the end of the course
Who is an Agricultural Worker?
An agricultural worker is anyone who works in a field that has been sprayed with pesticides within the last 30 days or does high-contact agricultural tasks such as weeding, moving irrigation equipment, pruning, and harvesting. Workers DO NOT handle pesticides.
Who is a Handler?
A handler is anyone who assists with applications, mixes, loads, or transfers pesticides into application equipment, cleans repairs, or maintains application equipment, works on equipment that has been used to mix, load, or apply, disposes of pesticides or materials with pesticides on them, acts as a flagger, performs tasks as a crop adviser, or applies pesticides.
Which Establishments are Required to Provide Worker Protection Standard Training?
The Worker Protection Standard (WPS) applies to all establishments involved in growing, producing, or maintaining for sale agricultural plants (including ornamental plants). This may include, but is not limited to:
- Nurseries, garden centers, or other similar operations where plants are maintained for sale (retail or wholesale).
- All Crop producing farms.
- Dairy farms that produce hay for cattle.
- Forestry Operations
- Golf courses that produce their own sod
- Public park operations that produce their own plants
- Prisons that have "Prison Farms" where agricultural plants are produced and the prisoners are employed as workers or handlers.
- The WPS also applies to any establishment operating as a commercial pesticide handling establishment that applies WPS-labeled pesticide products on agricultural establishments or provides crop advising services for an agricultural establishment.
Which pesticide applicators are covered by the WPS?
Most establishments covered by the WPS are crop producing such as farms, forest operations or nurseries. WPS also covers family owned agricultural operations even if only family members handle and work around pesticides. Essentially, WPS applies to any entity that grows, maintains or produces agricultural plants.
The following facilities or operations that are not generally recognized as traditional agricultural production establishments are covered by the rule if they use WPS-labeled pesticide products:
- Nurseries, garden centers or other similar operations
- Dairy farms if they produce hay for cattle feed.
- Golf courses that produce sod or ornamentals for their course
- Public parks or privately-held ornamental garden operations that produce ornamental plants
- Theme parks, hotels, or other entertainment operations that produce ornamentals for their locations
- Prisons that have “prison farms” where plants are produced by employed prisoners
- University extension agricultural research facilities that conduct research on agricultural plants
- Educational classes or vocational agriculture programs where plant production is completed by students and students receive compensation or reduced tuition
- Pine straw harvesting/production operations.
- Government-owned or managed agricultural operations.
The WPS also applies to any entity operating as a commercial pesticide handling establishment applying or advising the application of WPS-labeled pesticide products on agricultural commodities
What does Worker Protection Standard Require?
All employers must provide EPA approved pesticide training for workers and handlers. Employers must also provide access to specific information including: applications on the establishment, safety data sheets for pesticides applied on establishment, and display a poster with pesticide safety and emergency information.
Employers must keep workers and others out of areas where pesticides are being applied and away from equipment during applications. Handlers must stop application if workers or others are near equipment during applications. Workers must stay out of areas that are under a restricted-entry interval (REI). All early-entry workers on the job in in pesticide-treated areas during REI must be trained in the correct usage of personal protective equipment. Any handlers using highly toxic pesticides must be monitored. Personal protective equipment must be provided and monitored by employers.
The Worker Protection Standard course will train handlers and workers on supply decontamination and emergency assistance including transportation in the case of a pesticide-related accident.
More information on the requirements and how to comply can be found here. https://goo.gl/bjfk8K
When is Worker Protection Standard Required?
As of January 2nd, 2017 employers are required to train workers and handlers annually before pesticide application.
What has changed with Worker Protection Standards?
- Full Training for Workers and Handlers is now required annually (Every year).
- No grace period for training. Workers must be trained before they work in an area where pesticide has been used or an REI has been in effect in the past 30 days.
- Handlers are no longer able to be the qualified person available during the training.
- Expanded training content requirements.
- Establishments must keep records of training for 2 years and provide records to Workers and Handlers if requested.
- Handlers and early entry workers must be at least 18 years old.
Which Pesticides are included under Worker Protection Standards?
A pesticide product is covered by the WPS if the following statement is in the Directions for Use section on the product labeling:
AGRICULTURAL USE REQUIREMENTS
Use this product only in accordance with its labeling and with the Worker Protection Standard, 40 CFR 170.
How can I contact the EPA with Worker Protection Standard questions?
More information may be found at the EPA Agricultural Worker Protection Standard website, or you may reach the EPA at one of the regional offices listed below.
EPA Region 1 (New England) - 888-372-7341 in the New England States, or 617-918-1111
EPA Region 2 - 887-251-4575
EPA Region 3 (Mid-Atlantic) - 800-428-2474 in Region 3, or 215-814-5122
EPA Region 4 (Southeast) - 800-241-1754 in Region 4, or 404-562-9900
EPA Region 5 - 800-621-8431 in Region 5, or 312-353-2000
EPA Region 6 (South Central) - 800-887-6063
EPA Region 7 (Midwest) - 800-223-0425 in Region 7, or 913-551-7003
EPA Region 8 (Mountains and Plains) - 800-227-8917 in Region 8, or 303-312-6312
EPA Region 9 (Pacific Southwest) - 866-372-9378 in Region 9, or 415-947-8000
EPA Region 10 (Pacific Northwest) - 800-424-4372 in Region 10, or 206-553-1200
Not sure what region you're in? Click here.
Who is required to provide WPS training?
Employers at agricultural establishments and commercial pesticide handling establishments such as farms, forests, nurseries, and greenhouses.
Does the Worker Protection Standard requirement apply to organic farming?
Yes! Worker Protection Standards apply to pesticides if the following statement is in the Directions for Use section on the product labeling:
AGRICULTURAL USE REQUIREMENTS
Use this product only in accordance with its labeling and with the Worker Protection Standard, 40 CFR 170.
Core Exam Prep FAQs
What do I have to know to pass the Core Applicator Exam?
- Up-to-date pest management information and your responsibilities as an applicator
- Six general pest management methods and their application
- "Integrated Pest Management (IPM)" solutions defined
- Simplified federal pesticide laws and regulations that you will understand
- "Restricted use" vs. "general use" pesticides
- Learn to build an organized record keeping system
- Pesticide label explanations for proper identification and use
- Understand pesticide formulation and its effects
- Common abbreviations for pesticide formulations (e.g. WP or RUP)
- Typical symptoms of pesticide exposure in humans and harmful effects
- Hazard level classification including corresponding signal words
- Complete guide to Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
- Clear understanding of environmental effects of pesticides
- Proper transportation, storage and security of pesticides
- Emergency response and how to react
- Choosing the proper pesticide and correct application procedures
- Practice exam to test your knowledge
Who should take this online video course?
Anyone who is preparing to become a commercial or private pesticide applicator and plans on taking the National Pesticide Applicator Certification Core Exam. This course will give you everything you need to know to pass the exam on your first try. It is also an awesome tool for pesticide applicators who would like to refresh their knowledge or need to complete CEUs*.
*Please check with your state for current continuing education requirements.
Certified Crop Adviser (CCA) FAQs
What is a Certified Crop Adviser (CCA)?
The CCA certification was established by the American Society of Agronomy in 1992 to provide a benchmark for practicing agronomy professionals in the United States and Canada.
Who should become a Certified Crop Adviser?
Any adviser/consultant that spends the majority of their time advising growers or farm managers/operators on agronomic practices and can meet the standards of the program. Being certified adds credibility and shows that you are serious about what you do.
How do I become a Certified Crop Adviser?
- Pass two exams (International and Local Board)
- Meet the experience requirements
- Apply for the CCA Credential
What are the minimum experience requirements for becoming a Certified Crop Adviser?
- Have at least two years of experience with at least a Bachelor of Science Degree in an agronomy related field
(Please keep in mind that University degrees and transcripts must be in English and based on the United States educational standard. If you need assistance in the translation process, you may use Educational Credential Evaluators, Inc. or World Education Services)
*The number of CCAs with at least a Bachelor of Science Degree is greater than 70%
- Have at least three years of experience with an Associates Degree in an agronomy related field
- Have at least four years of experience with no degree
How do I apply to become a Certified Crop Adviser?
Once I become a Certified Crop Adviser, how do I maintain my certification?
- Earn 40 hours of continuing education units every 2 years
- Pay an annual renewal fee
How long is my Certified Crop Adviser certification valid?
2 years: your certification will expire December 31st two years after your initial certification date.
For example: if you became a CCA on any day between January 1st, 2018-December 31st, 2018--your expiration date would be December 31st, 2020.
Are your continuing education courses approved for CCA CEU Credit by the American Society of Agronomy?
Yes, many of our courses are approved by the American Society of Agronomy Board. On the state pages, the course description will say “Approved for Certified Crop Adviser Credit”.
As a Certified Crop Adviser, am I required to take continuing education units in certain areas or topics?
Yes, the continuing education units you complete must fall within certain topic guidelines. The topic breakdown is as follows:
In each two year cycle, a CCA must complete a minimum of 5 CEUs in each of the 4 categories.
The categories are Nutrient Management, Soil and Water Management, Integrated Pest Management, and Crop Management.
At least 20 of the 40 total CEUs must be board approved.
Can I use your courses for credit for CCA continuing education requirements as well as my state licensing recertification requirements?
Yes, absolutely! Any course that is approved for Certified Crop Adviser Credit can also be used for state pesticide applicator continuing education credits.