- Associated Press - Thursday, November 5, 2015

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) - State regulators have significantly increased the penalties for a company that conducts aerial pesticide spraying on private timberlands after it continued working despite having a suspended license.

The Oregon Department of Agriculture says Applebee Aviation must pay $160,000 and its owner Michael Applebee must pay an additional $20,000. The state’s original fine was $1,100.

The state is also suspending the company’s and its owner’s commercial pesticide operator licenses for 5 years. Previously, Applebee’s license was suspended for just one year over worker safety violations.

ODA says it discovered the company performed 16 separate pesticide applications in violation of its suspended license. The state obtained a restraining order in court to stop the company from spraying.

Michael Applebee is appealing all regulatory actions issued against the company. He declined to comment.

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