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NJ DEPT. OF ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION NEWS RELEASE
RELEASE: 2/13/01
01/12
CONTACT: Amy Collings or Rob Schmitt
609-984-1795 or 609-292-2994

PUBLIC HEARING SCHEDULED ON PESTICIDE RULE AMENDMENTS

The state Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) will conduct a public hearing Wed., Feb. 21, on proposed amendments to state pesticide control regulations.

"This proposal is the result of considerable effort and discussion involving the department and numerous stakeholders over the past several years. It addresses the need for prudent pesticide use while protecting public health and the environment," said DEP Commissioner Bob Shinn.

Existing pesticide rules govern the licensing of commercial pesticide applicators, pesticide dealers and private applicators such as farmers. The rules also outline public notification procedures for various types of pesticide applications, and regulate the sale of hazardous pesticides and other aspects of pesticide use.

The rule amendments would upgrade training requirements for commercial pesticide applicators, increase licensing requirements for private pesticide applicators such as farmers, and prohibit false or misleading advertising of pesticide products such those falsely claiming to be organic or environmentally friendly.

The rule amendments also would prohibit non-agricultural aerial application of broad-spectrum chemical pesticides and instead would require the use of biological controls or least hazardous alternatives when conducting, for example, community gypsy moth control spraying. Exceptions would include significant pest outbreaks.

In addition, the amendments would establish a notification system for outdoor pesticide applications within 250 feet of school grounds, when using high-pressure equipment that is more likely to cause the pesticide to drift.

The public hearing will be held 9 a.m. at the Office of Administrative Law, 9 Quakerbridge Plaza, Quakerbridge Road, Hamilton Twp., Mercer County. Written comments may be sent to: Janis E. Hoagland, Attn: DEP Docket #01-01-01/218, DEP Office of Legal Affairs, PO Box 402, Trenton, NJ 08625.

The proposal appears in the Feb. 5 "New Jersey Register." It can also be viewed at www.state.nj.us/dep/enforcement/pcp or obtained by calling the DEP's Pesticide Control Program at 609-984-6510. The public comment period concludes March 7.

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