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Urgent: The Attack on Local Pesticide Restrictions Is Still On

Hearing scheduled Wednesday this week on bill to stop local cities and towns from adopting ordinances that restrict pesticide use.

Tell your state legislators and members of the Joint Standing Committee on State and Local Government to oppose LD1853.

To recap what we told you a couple a weeks ago before this legislation moved through the agriculture committee. LD1853 will take away the authority of local governments in the state to restrict toxic pesticides use. LD1853 has the misleading title of “An Act to Ensure the Safe and Consistent Regulation of Pesticides throughout the State by Providing Exemptions to Municipal Ordinances that Regulate Pesticides” and is sponsored by Senator Tom Saviello of Franklin.

The democratic process is foundational to the culture of Maine and the country. LD 1853 betrays the democratic process and the will of communities and their elected officials to protect health and the environment. As you may know from the debate on a similar piece of legislation that failed last session, LD 1505, Maine communities want to be able to adopt standards that exceed or are more stringent than state standards as a matter of public health and environmental protection, or quality of life.

LD1853 is a blatant attempt to subvert the will of the democratic process to limit the commercial use of toxic pesticides, despite the availability of less or non-toxic alternative practices and products. From a health and environmental perspective in the community, it does not matter whether a pesticide is applied by a commercial operators or a homeowner. The point is that the democratic process has resulted in a restriction of toxic pesticide use in the community.

When the U.S. Supreme Court looked at this issue in 1991 and voted to uphold the rights of local communities under the federal pesticide law, the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA), it found that the law “does not equate registration and labeling requirements with a general approval to apply pesticides throughout the Nation without regard to regional and local factors, like climate, population, geography and water supply [emphasis added].” In effect, the court recognized the value of local authority in addressing pesticide use in the context of local conditions and concerns.

When the chemical industry tried similar legislation last year, the bill failed. Now, pesticide proponents are trying again.

Tell your state legislators and members of the Joint Standing Committee on State and Local Government to oppose LD1853.


Want to do more? Call the committee members and make your voice heard.

Call List: Joint Standing Committee on State and Local Government

Senator Paul T. Davis, Sr. (R-Piscataquis, District 4), Chair

Paul.Davis@legislature.maine.gov

(207) 876 - 4047 Cell: (207) 343 – 0258

 

Senator Lisa Keim (R-Oxford, District 18)

Lisa.Keim@legislature.maine.gov

(207) 562-6023

 

Senator Susan A. Deschambault (D-York, District 32)

susan.deschambault@legislature.maine.gov

(207) 284 – 3570

 

Representative Roland Danny Martin (D-Sinclair, District 150), Chair

Danny.Martin@legislature.maine.gov

(207) 543-6165 or (207) 231-1358

 

Representative Mark E. Bryant (D-Windham, District 24)

(207) 892-6591
 

Representative Pinny Beebe-Center (D-Rockland, District 93)

(207) 596-3937
 

Representative George W. Hogan (D-Old Orchard Beach, District 13)

(207) 423-4293
 

Representative John E. Madigan, Jr. (D-Rumford, District 115)

(207) 369-0303
 

Representative John Alden Spear (D-South Thomaston, District 92)

(207) 596-7720 or (207) 596-3545
 

Representative Richard A. Pickett (R-Dixfield, District 116), Ranking Minority Member

(207) 645-4893
 

Representative Matthew A. Harrington (R-Sanford, District 19)

(207) 287-1400 or (207) 831-6746
 

Representative Lester S. Ordway (R-Standish, District 23)

(207) 642-3491
 

Representative Chad Wayne Grignon (R-Athens, District 118)

(207) 654-2771 or (207) 612-6499

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