Notification Law Passes in Upstate New York County
(Beyond Pesticides, July 11, 2005) A hard fought battle to restrict the use of pesticides by requiring residents to notify neighbors 48-hours in advance when pesticides are used on their lawns was recently won in Monroe County and the City of Rochester, New York.
The Monroe County legislature passed a 21-8 vote in favor of the notification, which goes into effect January 2006. The County is the first Republican-dominated County to opt-in to the New York state Neighbor Notification Law, first passed in Albany in New York State in 2000 with an opt-in provision for all other counties. Monroe is the 13th County to opt-in.
The law will require commercial lawn applicators to notify all neighbors within 150 feet of the application site. Homeowners spraying more than 100 feet are required to set up flags around the area, and violators can be fined or have jail time. Lawn service companies, who opposed the law, say the paperwork will be too burdensome.
The battle for the law has been supported and pursued by a number of environmental and environmental health groups working together to pass the law, including the Breast Cancer Coalition of Rochester, NY PIRG, Sierra Club, Citizens Campaign for the Environment, and others. The law was introduced earlier this year by Maggie Brooks, the new Monroe County Executive.
Researchers from the University of Rochester also weighed in to shed more light on the vulnerabilities of pregnant women and children to toxic lawn chemicals. This bill will give parents and expectant parents the opportunity to protect themselves and their children from exposure to hazardous lawn pesticides.
TAKE ACTION: Press for similar reform in your community. Visit Beyond Pesticides Lawns and Landscapes program page for more information.