Producer members of the Northwest Plains Boll Weevil Committee are encouraging fellow cotton producers to vote “FOR” boll weevil eradication during the zone’s upcoming eradication program retention referendum.

Ballots for the retention vote were mailed by the Texas Department of Agriculture January 20.

Citing the tremendous success of the Northwest Plains eradication effort, NWP steering committee members are proud to note that the zone has eliminated 100 percent of its operational debt and will recommend to the Texas Boll Weevil Eradication Foundation that the NWP zone’s assessment rate be lowered substantially in 2007.

According to information provided by the NWP committee, plans for 2007 include further reduction of program operations in preparation for an eventual shift to a monitoring and maintenance program that utilizes fewer traps, fewer people and less equipment.

If approved, the NWP committee’s proposed $4 per acre irrigated and $2 per acre dryland assessment rate will ensure adequate funding is in place to carry out 2007 operational activities and also ensure the zone stays on track to be declared functionally eradicated, hopefully within the next few growing seasons.

Members of the Northwest Plains Boll Weevil Committee include: James Brown, Jimmy McCurry, Vic Nelson, Bryan Patterson, Ricky Rector, Kevin Riley, Charles Schlabs, Jerry Sowder, Mark Williams, and John Saylor.