This page summarizes the PRL reporting process: what report submitters need to do and what they can expect to happen when they file a PRL report.
The reporting process has four phases:
- Report Creation
- Report Submission
- Report Processing
At the beginning of the report year determine the type of report appropriate to your business and decide how to collect the data required for that report type. At the end of the report year create a pesticide report from the data collected using a format that matches the appropriate form type(s) for the business that you are in.
Next choose one of the submission methods to use and assemble the report files for your business into a single submission. Then enter or verify the contact information to be submitted with the report and submit your pesticide report.
Report processing for all electronic reports is done at the Pesticide Reporting Service Bureau. The service bureau will send you an email when your report has been received and another one if your report passes validation. We will also send you an email if your report requires correction. The applicators and/or sales business(es) included on your report will not be credited with filing until your report has passed validation.
Planning and Report Creation
Pesticide applicators and businesses will use form 26 and 26A, while pesticide sales businesses will primarily use forms 25 and 27 and sometimes form 26 . For more information see Decide Which Forms to Use.
There is no required way to collect or enter the PRL data into software, but the files submitted to us must conform to the form types developed by the DEC. Some pesticide management software packages have the capability to export a formatted PRL report. If you use one of these packages, be sure to export the report in either text or Excel (or other spreadsheet) format, not as PDF. If your software cannot export a PRL report, but can export to a spreadsheet, you can then paste the data into one of our software options.
If you do not use pesticide management software that stores the PRL data or that allows you to export the data, download and install one of our software options. For more information on the various options see Which Software Option Should I Use?
Data Entry Guidelines
- Do not use ditto marks or equivalent notation on any of the four form types.
- Each required column should contain a single value (one EPA number, one street address etc).
- Do not add extra columns to the files that you send us; report only columns that are on the four form types or the file types defined in the Text File Specifications
- Consult the Data Dictionary for the description of any column you have questions about. For example, the and county columns require specific abbreviations or codes.
After you are finished entering your pesticide data, you need to prepare the report for submission. Please follow these guidelines
- Submit all your data for the entire year at one time. Do not send us the data incrementally, such as by the month or week.
- Send all the files that are part of your report in one submission using a single submission method. For example, do not send a paper form 26A to the DEC in Albany and an electronic form 26 to the PRL Service Bureau.
- Do not send multiple copies of your report unless we request a replacement report from you.
- Minimize the number of files of the same form type you submit. Multiple files of the same type increase the chance that your report will fail validation. That is because we use an error threshold based on the percentage of error records in the file. A smaller file has a lower error threshold.
See Submitting Your Electronic Report for information on the various options for sending us your report. Please note that while we monitor all the reporting channels (PRL software upload, web site upload, email, CD/DVD and paper) and will get the report through any of them, you will get a confirmation of receipt email from us more quickly if you use one of the upload methods.
You can submit your report whenever you have finished making applications (or selling pesticides) for the year. We do not process early submissions as they arrive; typically they are processed in December.
What to Expect When You Submit Your Report
Depending on what submission method you use, the following will happen when you send us your report:
- Upload from PRL Reporting Software or the web site: When the upload is complete, a page will display with your submission number and a list of files we received. We will also send you an email with the same information. The email will go to whatever email address you entered into the email field for the contact person. If no email arrives within an hour or so, you may want to contact us.
- Email: We will send you an email with your submission number and a list of the files we received.. The email will go to the email address that was used to send us the files. This email will usually be sent within one business day. If no email arrives within that time frame, you may want to contact us.
If your report is accepted, review the list of applicators (or the name of the pesticide sales business) to make sure that all the applicators and/or businesses have been included. If your report was rejected, we will send you an email describing the issues with the report. Please make these corrections and email the corrected report to us at email@example.com. Be sure to include your submission number. See Correcting Rejected Reports for more information on making report corrections.
February 1 is the deadline for submitting your report to us, not for the report to be validated and accepted. Because of the backlog of reports we receive close to the deadline, it may be a few weeks before we contact you again. This does not mean that your report is late. Please monitor your inbox for emails from this email address: firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you would like to verify whether your DEC-issued identification number has been credited with reporting for the current report year, you can do so on our Annual Reports Received page.