106-65.46. Commissioner of Agriculture to enforce Article; further authority of Board.

It shall be the duty of the Commissioner to exercise the powers and duties imposed upon him by this Article and such regulations as shall be adopted under these provisions for the purpose of protecting the environment from adverse effects of biological organisms released into the environment of North Carolina and to protect beneficial biological organisms in the State. The Board is hereby authorized to cause importation, collection, release, destruction and propagation of beneficial organisms when such action is deemed to be in the best interest of North Carolina and its environment. The Board is authorized to promote and/or regulate businesses, persons or agencies engaged in the importation, collection, rearing, sales, release, or use of biological organisms. The Board is authorized to establish standards of positive identification, purity of culture or colony, freedom from disease and hyperparasites of biological organisms and to establish standards of competence and responsibility for the private practitioner engaged in the propagation, use, distribution, release or sale of biological organisms.

The Commissioner is hereby authorized to cause or cooperate in management or mitigation programs to be conducted against such plant, environmental, or nuisance pests as can be controlled in an economically, ecologically, and biologically sound manner. The Board is authorized to cause use of pesticides, parasites, predators, pheromones, genetic material, and other control techniques which are consistent with the pesticide, environmental and other laws applicable in the State of North Carolina.

The Commissioner shall have authority to designate such employees of the North Carolina Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services and/or to enter into cooperative agreements with other governmental agencies as may be needed to carry out the duties and exercise the powers provided by this Article. Persons collaborating with the Division of Entomology may also be designated by the Commissioner as agents for the purpose of this Article. (1973, c. 713, s. 5; 1997-261, s. 109.)