Greenhouse Crop Management Assoc

Document Sample
Greenhouse Crop Management Assoc Powered By Docstoc
					ESTABLISHING & OPERATING

Greenhouse Crop Management Associations
IN PENNSYLVANIA

IPM

Contents
Introduction .................................................................. 3 Benefits of CMAs ......................................................... 3 The Lancaster-Lebanon CMA .................................... 3 Establishing a greenhouse CMA ............................... 4 Step 1. Determine interest, goals, and structure. ........................................... 4 Step 2. Write a membership agreement. ........... 5 Step 3. Employ a lawyer...................................... 5 Step 4. Submit bylaws to the membership for approval. ..................... 5 Step 5. Elect a board of directors. ...................... 5 Step 6. Employ a consultant or hire an independent contractor. ............ 5 Responsibilities of CMA directors and officers ....... 6 Responsibilities of CMA treasurers ........................... 6 Insurance policies ........................................................ 8 CMA employees ........................................................... 8 Educational support for crop consultants ........................................................... 9 Constitution and Bylaws of a Pennsylvania Greenhouse Crop Management Association ......... 11 Membership Agreement Crop Management Association ............................... 14 For more information ................................................ 14 Acknowledgments ..................................................... 14

2

Introduction
Greenhouse crop management associations (CMAs) help growers obtain and interpret information and improve profitability of Pennsylvania greenhouse operations by providing professional integrated pest management (IPM) services and consulting. The ultimate goal of every crop management association is to promote more economical, efficient, and environmentally sound crop production practices in member greenhouses. The purpose of this publication is to guide greenhouse owners in organizing producer-owned crop management associations. It lists the general services offered by crop management personnel, benefits cited by producers, steps in establishing a crop association, and responsibilities of CMA directors. Also described are the characteristics of one operating association, including its structure, size, and employee profile.

The Lancaster-Lebanon CMA
The Lancaster-Lebanon CMA is an example of a fully functioning greenhouse CMA in Pennsylvania. The association has four grower members and two “special case” members, who request seasonal scouting and are billed on a prorated basis. Greenhouse size and square footage of growing space vary greatly among members and change with the growing seasons for different crops. This CMA was formed by growers who wanted to hire a qualified crop consultant but who individually could not afford to hire an employee for the sole purpose of scouting. By joining together they were able to hire a consultant and pay for worker’s compensation, scouting equipment, and educational materials and training. Once a group of interested growers was solidified, they pooled their financial resources and began start-up procedures for a CMA. They hired a lawyer, purchased equipment, and advertised for a qualified crop consultant. The group also applied for and received a grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture (PDA), which helped to partially reimburse members for start-up fees. The greenhouse crop consultant offers grower members various services, including the following: ❧ Pest identification: early identification of pathogenic fungi, bacterial diseases, insect infestations, viruses, and warning signs of those pests. Observations are made on a weekly basis and greatly reduce what could be unexpected problems. Since growers within the CMA share information and buy and sell plants from one another, early detection of pest problems benefits all CMA members. ❧ Evaluation of pest management control effectiveness: the consultant keeps detailed records so that growers know what control practices have worked well in the past. Chemical, biorational, and biological control effectiveness varies from one operation to the next, so maintenance of individual records is important. ❧ Soluble salts/pH evaluation: regular monitoring of pH and soluble salts can significantly cut fertilizer costs and ensure increased shelf life for marketable plants.

Benefits of CMAs
Member growers cite the following benefits: ❧ Optimum crop quality, profits, and use of labor and equipment ❧ Efficient, economical, and ecological use of pesticides and fertilizers ❧ Accurate and timely maintenance of records for Department of Agriculture inspections ❧ Power in numbers, which allows groups of growers to employ a greenhouse crop consultant, eliminating the need for each grower to hire an extra employee for scouting or make do with minimal scouting

3

Establishing a greenhouse CMA
Two essential components are necessary to start a greenhouse crop management association: (1) growers who recognize a need for crop management scouting and who are willing to pay for necessary services and volunteer time and energy to organize the CMA; and (2) an extension agent who will provide organizational and technical support. There are six steps to establishing a CMA.

STEP 1.
Determine interest, goals, and structure. The extension agent and growers meet to determine interest in establishing a local association. Representatives from an established association should be present to answer questions and give advice. A set of goals and possible structure for the organization should be discussed at this time. To establish a set of goals, growers should decide what benefits they hope to derive from a CMA, including: ❧ accurate identification of pest problems ❧ precise crop-to-crop and year-to-year record keeping ❧ improved crop quality and reduced crop losses ❧ more efficient and economical use of pesticides and fertilizers ❧ an affordable crop consultant Growers also should decide how the CMA should be structured. Reviewing the bylaws of an existing association may help growers determine: ❧ how members will be identified, recruited, and retained ❧ what fees or dues members will be required to pay ❧ what the responsibilities of individual members will be ❧ whether there will be a board of directors ❧ how employees or independent contractors will be hired ❧ what kinds of insurance, taxes, and legal requirements are necessary ❧ whether external sources of funding will be explored

4

A critical issue to be discussed is the initial commitment required of members when the CMA is formed. The association must be able to maintain itself financially, so the commitment of the initial membership is significant. Items to be discussed may include: ❧ minimum time commitment from members — must join for one full year — must pay a set membership fee and/or yearly dues — must agree to pay the employee a predetermined rate per hour — must evaluate the system six months from the starting date ❧ flexible time commitment from members — the scout is available to each grower for work based on seasonal need. (The scout may be a part-time, seasonal employee or may be hired on a contractual bases from a consulting service.) — members agree to pay the employee a determined rate for a set period. (For example, a reasonable period is determined for each major growing season, and a grower is responsible for paying the employee for scouting only during that determined period. The scout would be used only when needed for each grower.) Before moving to step 2, parts of step 1 may have to be repeated or re-evaluated. More members may be needed, or the structure may have to be modified.

STEP 2.
Write a membership agreement. A committee of interested growers is appointed to recruit additional members, write a membership agreement, and establish and collect membership fees, if applicable.

STEP 3.
Employ a lawyer. A lawyer is employed to produce a final copy of the constitution and bylaws, advise on legal organization, and file the necessary paperwork. A lawyer will work with the CMA to establish incorporation, a federal tax ID number for the CMA, and the names and official addresses of the CMA officers, and to legally announce the formation of the CMA in a local newspaper.

STEP 4.
Submit bylaws to the membership for approval. Members review and vote to change or accept the final copy of the CMA’s bylaws.

STEP 5.
Elect a board of directors. In addition to officers, a board of directors may be elected from the membership. An extension agent may participate as an ex-officio director. In a large CMA, the board of directors acts as a body representative of all CMA members.

STEP 6.
Employ a consultant or hire an independent contractor. The responsibilities of a greenhouse crop consultant are discussed, as are payment rate and method, and the association actively seeks a consultant. The association may advertise for a consultant in newspapers or in other pertinent publications, in the PENpages system, and through the posting of announcements at county extension offices, PDA offices, or local colleges and universities and vocational-technical schools. Retired or semiretired greenhouse owners or workers should not be overlooked.
5

Responsibilities of CMA directors and officers
Directors elected by and from the membership and officers elected as dictated in the bylaws are responsible for local CMA operations. They meet regularly to: ❧ hire and evaluate employees ❧ arrange for scouting materials, training, seminars, and updates ❧ determine employee services and salary ❧ set and determine how to collect fees ❧ determine membership responsibilities ❧ recruit members (a responsibility that may be delegated to the scout) ❧ determine committee appointments (if applicable) ❧ conduct tax and insurance business ❧ evaluate association accomplishments ❧ schedule annual meetings and educational programs for the membership

Responsibilities of CMA treasurers
A CMA should have a treasurer responsible for all monetary transactions involving the association. Responsibilities include but are not limited to: ❧ bookkeeping ❧ billing members for services rendered ❧ employee payroll ❧ payment of employee benefits In addition, the treasurer files the necessary forms and paperwork to maintain tax exempt status and insurance premiums. Finally, the treasurer’s books are audited by an impartial accountant once a year. The tax forms required of a CMA are determined in part by the way in which workers are employed. A CMA employing regular or part-time workers is required to file certain tax forms, and a CMA employing independent contractor workers is required to file certain other tax forms. For a regular full- or part-time employee, the association withholds taxes from the employee’s paychecks. For an independent contracting employee, the employee is paid and then is responsible for paying the appropriate taxes. Each method of employment has advantages and disadvantages. To learn more about either, CMA treasurers should consult the following publications: Publications 15 (also called Circular E), Employer’s Tax Guide: A Step-byStep Guide to Employer’s Taxes, which lists the ramifications of filing incorrectly for employees, and Publication 15A, Employer’s Supplemental Tax Guide, which explains the difference between an employee and an independent contractor. These publications are available from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) by calling 1-800-829-3676. More information on IRS forms can be obtained by calling 1-800-829-1040. A CMA employing regular full or part time workers will file the forms listed in the chart on the next page.

6

FORM

DESCRIPTION

CONTACT

FILING DATE

SS-4 W-4 8109 941 501-W3 UC-2

Application for employer’s ID # Income tax withholding form Federal tax deposit coupon Employer’s quarterly federal tax return Employer’s withholding form State employer’s report for unemployment compensation Federal employer’s annual unemployment tax return Local wage tax

Post office or local bank IRS office IRS office IRS office Regional Pa. Dept. of Revenue Local Dept. of Labor and Industry Office of Employee Security Local Dept. of Labor and Industry Office of Employment Security Local wage tax collector

When association is formed When employee is hired Quarterly Quarterly Quarterly Annually

940

Annually

Annually

7

Insurance policies
The following insurance policies are recommended: Commercial liability—designed to cover any nonwillful negligence on the part of any employee who may misdiagnose a problem, any employee who may get into an argument with a client causing a slander situation, and/or any employee who states something will be done for the farmer and the end result is that it is not accomplished. Hired/non-owned auto—designed to cover any employee who has an at-fault accident with his/her vehicle during working hours and is being sued by the claimant. This policy can cover any lawsuit above the limits of the employee’s own commercial policy if he/she is proven to be at fault. Workmen’s compensation—designed to cover any employee who is hurt on the job. This policy will cover medical costs for injuries as a result of job duties and will reimburse the employee for wages if he/she is absent from work for more than one week. Directors/officers liability—designed to cover any nonwillful wrongdoing of the officers and directors including misrepresentation of the organization in any way. Bonding—designed to cover theft or fraudulent use of treasury moneys up to policy limits.

CMA employees
Crop management consultants with advanced degrees and greenhouse experience normally have little difficulty gaining the trust and respect of their CMA members. When members trust and respect the work and advice of their technician, membership usually increases. Unless employees are given an opportunity to advance their positions and increase their incomes, most organizations will face hiring new crop management personnel every one to three years. CMAs should expand their membership to enable employees to increase their salaries and advance to positions with greater responsibilities. The qualifications and responsibilities of greenhouse CMA employees may include the following: a bachelor’s degree in entomology, horticulture, or other related agricultural curriculum, plus some greenhouse experience, or a two-year agricultural degree plus significant greenhouse production experience, or many years of greenhouse experience with proper training. Employees are responsible for the full range of scouting tasks, including sampling, evaluating, and record keeping services.

8

Educational support for crop consultants
The following support should be made available to CMA consultants by cooperating extension agents: ❧ regularly scheduled meetings with the extension agent, one to two days per week for the first month ❧ regular contact with both the extension agent and CMA growers to determine expectations, problems, and solutions ❧ monthly visits with the extension agent and CMA growers until consultant competence is achieved ❧ knowledge of educational programs available throughout the state and region ❧ regular updates through trade magazines, research publications, and newsletters ❧ access to the expertise of specialists and services listed below Penn State College of Agricultural Sciences Specialists and Services Robert D. Berghage Assistant Professor of Horticulture 318C Tyson Building. University Park, PA 16802 (814) 863-6168 Paul R. Heller Professor of Entomology 539 ASI Building University Park, PA 16802 (814) 865-3008 Alan H. Michael Extension Agent, Horticulture 1451 Peters Mountain Road Dauphin, PA 17018 (717) 921-8803 Gary W. Moorman Professor of Plant Pathology 111 Buckhout Lab University Park, PA 16802 (814) 863-7401 Michael D. Orzolek Professor of Vegetable Crops 203 Tyson Building University Park, PA 16802 (814) 863-2251

Department of Agricultural Services 111 Ag Analytical Services Lab Tower Road University Park, PA 16802 (814) 865-2204 Plant Disease Clinic 220 Buckhout Lab University Park, PA 16802 (814) 863-0841 Private services AgDia, Inc. 30380 County Road 6 Elkhart, IN 46514 (219) 264-2014 Scotts Testing Lab 6656 Grant Way Allentown, PA 18106 (610) 395-7104 1-800-743-4769 Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture Bureau of Plant Industry Services Region I RD 2, Box 825C Meadville, PA 16335-9561 (814) 332-6890 Region II 443 Hepburn St., Hepburn Plaza Williamsport, PA 17703-6122 (717)-327-3550 Region III Route 92 South, PO Box C Tunkhannock, PA 18657-0318 (717) 836-6266 Region IV 5349 William Flynn Highway Gibsonia, PA 15044-9644 (412) 443-1585 Region V Executive Plaza, 615 Howard Avenue Altoona, PA 16601-4863 (814) 946-7315 Region VI PO Box 419 Summerdale, PA 17093-0419 (717) 787-3400 Region VII Route 113, PO Box 300 Creamery, PA 19430-0300 (610) 489-1003

9

10

Constitution and Bylaws of a Pennsylvania Greenhouse Crop Management Association
ARTICLE I. Name Section 1. The name of this association shall be ______________________________________________________. ARTICLE II. Purpose Section 1. Further purposes and powers of this association are as set forth in the following articles. ARTICLE III. Membership Section 1. Eligibility Any person, firm, partnership, or corporation, including landlords and tenants in shared tenancies, engaged in the production of agronomic crops, residing in the area covered by this association, pays the prescribed membership fees and dues, and signs a membership agreement, shall be eligible for membership and upon acceptance of his/her application by the board of directors shall become a member of this association. Section 2. Termination of Membership Failure to use the services of the association or to pay for services provided, or assessments levied, shall terminate membership. ARTICLE IV. Fiscal Year and Meetings Section 1. Fiscal Year The fiscal year of this association shall commence on January 1 and end on December 31. Section 2. Annual Meeting The annual meeting of the members of this association shall be held at such time and place as designated by the board of directors. Section 3. Special Meetings Special meetings of the members of this association may be called at any time by the president or by three members of the board of directors. No business shall be transacted at a special meeting except such as is specified in the notice. Section 4. Notice of Meetings Notice of all meetings, together with a statement of the purposes thereof, shall be mailed to each member at his/her last known address, by the secretary at least ten days prior to the meeting. Section 5. Voting Each member present is entitled to one and only one vote on each question. Section 6. Quorum The members present, at a regularly called meeting, shall constitute a quorum. Section 7. Order of Business The order of business at the annual meeting shall be: a. Proof of due notice of meeting b. Reading and disposal of minutes c. Annual reports of officers and committees d. Election of directors e. Unfinished business f. New business g. Adjournment
11

ARTICLE V. Duties of Directors Section 1. Management of Business The board of directors shall have general supervision and control of the business and the affairs of the association and shall make all rules and regulations not inconsistent with the law or these bylaws for the management of the business and the guidance of the members, officers and employees of the association. They shall have installed an accounting system which shall be adequate to the requirements of the business, and it shall be their duty to require proper records to be kept of all business transactions. Section 2. Bonds and Insurance The board of directors shall require all persons charged with the responsibility for the custody of any of its funds to give adequate bonds. Such bonds, unless cash security is given, shall be furnished by a responsible bonding company and approved by the board of directors, and the cost thereof shall be paid by the association. The board of directors shall provide for the adequate insurance of the property of the association, or property which may be in the possession of the association, or stored by it, and not otherwise adequately insured, and in addition adequate insurance covering liability for accidents to all employees and the public. Section 3. Audit At least once in each year the board of directors shall secure the services of a competent and disinterested public auditor or accountant, who shall make a careful audit of the books and accounts of the association and render a report in writing thereon, which report shall be submitted to the members of the association at their annual meeting. Section 4. Depository The board of directors shall have the power to select one or more banks to act as depositories of the funds of the association, and to determine the manner of receiving, depositing, and disbursing the funds of the association and the form of checks and the person or persons by whom same shall be signed, with the power to change such banks and the person or persons signing such checks and the form thereof at will. Section 5. Power of Borrowing The board of directors shall have the power to borrow money for the operation of the association. Section 6. Committees The board of directors may appoint such committees as they see fit in the conduct of the business of the association. ARTICLE VI. Duties of Officers Section 1. Duties of the President The president shall (1) preside over all meetings of the association and of the board of directors, (2) call special meetings of the association and of the board of directors, (3) sign with the secretary all legal instruments used by the association, and (4) perform all acts and duties usually required by an executive and presiding officer. Section 2. Duties of the Vice President In the absence or disability of the president, the vice president shall preside and perform the duties of the president. Section 3. Duties of the Secretary The secretary shall (1) keep a complete record of all meetings of the association and of the board of directors, (2) sign as secretary all legal instruments on behalf of the association, (3) serve all notices required by law and by these bylaws, and (4) make a full report of all matters and business pertaining to his/her office to the members of the annual meeting.
12

Section 4. Duties of the Treasurer The treasurer shall perform such duties with respect to the finances of the association as may be prescribed by the board of directors. ARTICLE VII. Duties and Rights of Members Section 1. Voting Each member shall be entitled to only one vote on any question and voting by proxy shall not be permitted. Section 2. Withdrawal Failure of a member to patronize the association shall constitute withdrawal and by that act the member shall forfeit his/her right to vote. Section 3. Grievances and complaints Any member having a grievance or complaint against the association may appeal in writing to the board of directors. ARTICLE VIII. Services and Savings Section 1. Operations The board of directors shall make such deductions from sales, proceeds, or charges on supplies handled in amounts sufficient to meet only actual expenses incurred or reasonably expected to be incurred in the operation of the business. All excess funds shall be returned to patrons on a patronage basis. ARTICLE IX. Dissolution Section 1. Liquidation In the event of dissolution, each patron shall share in the net assets of the association in the same proportion as the amounts shown by his/her patronage account bears to the total of all patronage accounts. If notice of the character of the amendment proposed has been given in the notice of the meeting, these bylaws may be amended by a majority vote of members present at any annual meeting or special meeting called for the purpose. These bylaws were adopted by the membership at the annual meeting held on _________________________________.

13

Membership Agreement Crop Management Association
I hereby apply for membership in the ___________________________________ Crop Management Association. In order to facilitate the orderly operation of this organization, I agree: 1. That my membership in this association shall be self-perpetuating until it is terminated as provided in the bylaws of the association. 2. To pay a nonrefundable membership fee of $_____________ before services are rendered. 3. To pay a rate based on the number of hours used at my business as established by the board of directors. In addition, I agree to pay any additional assessment that the board of directors shall find necessary for continued operation of the association. A current schedule of fees shall accompany this agreement. 4. To authorize the association’s authorized representatives to enter upon the premises owned by me to perform services and agree to hold the association and its authorized representatives harmless for any liabilities or damages resulting from performing this service. 5. That association representatives’ recommendations are just that, and the grower agrees that he/she is not held bound to follow these recommendations and the association shall not be held responsible for any results due to the recommendations made by the representative of the association implied or otherwise. 6. To abide by the decision of the board of directors in all differences of opinion regarding the quality of the service and operation of the association. 7. That this agreement shall become binding at the time my application is accepted by the board of directors.

DATE

APPLICANT’S SIGNATURE

For more information The Pennsylvania Integrated Pest Management Program promotes the use of IPM as a sound system for management practice. For further information, the following sources may be contacted: Pennsylvania Crop Management Association Jan Pruss, Penn State Program Manager 116 ASI Building University Park, PA 16802 (814) 863-1020 Pennsylvania IPM Program Ed Rajotte, Penn State IPM Coordinator Department of Entomology 501 ASI Building University Park, PA 16802 (814) 863-4641

Lee Bentz, PDA IPM Coordinator Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture 2301 N. Cameron Street Harrisburg, PA 17110-5204 (717) 772-5204

Acknowledgments The Pennsylvania IPM Program thanks the following people for their valuable comments on the manuscript: Robert D. Berghage, assistant professor of horticulture; Alan H. Michael, extension agent, horticulture; Gary W. Moorman, professor of plant pathology; Michael D. Orzolek, professor of vegetable crops; Janis T. Pruss, Penn State CMA program manager; and Judy Smith, greenhouse scout for the Lancaster/Lebanon County CMA.

14

15

College of Agricultural Sciences, Cooperative Extension

Prepared by Maria Scalzi Wherley, Penn State College of Agricultural Sciences
Penn State College of Agricultural Sciences research, extension, and resident education programs are funded in part by Pennsylvania counties, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture. This publication is available from the Publications Distribution Center, The Pennsylvania State University, 112 Agricultural Administration Building, University Park, PA 16802. For information telephone (814) 865-6713. Where trade names appear, no discrimination is intended, and no endorsement by the Penn State Cooperative Extension is implied. Issued in furtherance of Cooperative Extension Work, Acts of Congress May 8 and June 30, 1914, in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Pennsylvania Legislature. T. R. Alter, Interim Director of Cooperative Extension, The Pennsylvania State University.

This publication is available in alternative media on request.
The Pennsylvania State University is committed to the policy that all persons shall have equal access to programs, facilities, admission, and employment without regard to personal characteristics not related to ability, performance, or qualifications as determined by University policy or by state or federal authorities. The Pennsylvania State University does not discriminate against any person because of age, ancestry, color, disability or handicap, national origin, race, religious creed, sex, sexual orientation, or veteran status. Direct all inquiries regarding the nondiscrimination policy to the Affirmative Action Director, The Pennsylvania State University, 201 Willard Building, University Park, PA 16802-2801: Tel. (814) 865-4700/V, (814) 8631150/TTY. © The Pennsylvania State University 1997
2.5M697comm

16