- Associated Press - Friday, May 13, 2016

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - The Illinois Department of Agriculture is offering free disposal of unwanted agricultural pesticides for farmers and other users in 12 central Illinois counties.

The department said Thursday that the Clean Sweep program is offered through a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency grant.

John Teefey is bureau chief of environmental programs. He says it’s expensive for people to dispose of the agrichemicals on their own, and with the Clean Sweep program the state assumes liability for proper disposal of materials.

The program started in 1990 and rotates between Illinois counties. This summer, it’s open to people in Clark, Coles, Crawford, Cumberland, Douglas, Edgar, Effingham, Jasper, Lawrence, Moultrie, Richland and Shelby counties.

The state Agriculture Department has collected more than 500,000 pounds from 1,893 participants.

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