More than 50 people attended the public hearing last night in Clovis on the California Department of Pesticide Regulation’s (CDPR) proposed regulation to Provide Public Access to Pesticide Information Prior to Applications. The Association’s President/CEO Roger A. Isom was in attended and spoke in opposition to the proposed regulation. At the beginning of his comments Isom stated “CDPR is doing a disservice to the people in attendance here tonight and to all parties involved. CDPR must explain the lengthy and robust process that every single pesticide goes through to become registered. The restrictions on the labels come after years of testing and thorough review by the scientists at CDPR and EPA. I do not believe CDPR would allow the use of any pesticide that would cause harm to any farmworker, resident, or innocent bystander. So why is this regulation needed if the necessary precautions to ensure a safe environment are already in place. CDPR needs to explain that”.
Many commenters blamed pesticides for cancer, asthma, valley fever and one even blamed pesticides for fading the color of her clothes within days of exposure to pesticides. Another blamed pesticides for causing all the fallowed lands in western Fresno County stating “they must be contaminated from pesticides.” Isom further commented “our opposition is not to the notification itself, but to the ramifications of the notification like we have seen in Monterey County where applications have been put on hold for weeks due to public appeals only to be approved in the end.” Joining the Association in commenting was the Nisei Farmers League and several growers, PCAs and an aerial applicator. Comments are being accepted until January 12th.