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Illinois Simplifies Environmental Rules

To simplify the myriad of environmental regulations that pertain to agricultural and horticultural operations, the University of Illinois (U of I) Extension developed Ezregs, a new Web site that can be accessed at

“Ezregs makes it easier to find and understand the regulations that affect the day-to-day operations of producers and other farm and plant professionals,” says Ted Funk, U of I Extension specialist in agricultural and biological engineering. Funk is a co-author of the new site, along with Extension specialists Randy Fonner, Scott Bretthauer and Bruce Palsrud.

The Web site features a database of 13 sets of regulations including the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency Livestock Regulations, the Livestock Management Facility Act, the Illinois Construction Site Stormwater Permit, the Illinois Pesticide Act, the Endangered Species Act and the Historic Resources Preservation Act.

Currently, Web site users can access sections on four different types of operations: livestock production, food crop production, ornamental horticulture production and landscape maintenance.

After choosing a type of production system, users can scroll through frequently asked questions that will pull up pertinent regulations. Answers are provided in laymen’s terms; a glossary section is also included.

“I think this is one of those Web sites that people are going to bookmark as a favorite and return to often,” Funk says. “There are just too many details in the regulations for anyone to commit to memory, and those are details that can make or break an operation.”