In a move that could have significant impact on certain agricultural operations, DPR is proposing a new regulation that would give further protections to children when agricultural pesticides are applied within a quarter mile schools and child day-care facilities. The proposed regulation would require advance notification when certain pesticides are applied within a quarter mile of schools or child day-care facilities. DPR is seeking further public comment on the proposed regulation by November 17, 2016, and a final regulation is expected to become effective in September 2017. The proposed regulation would do the following:
- Prohibit many pesticide applications within a quarter mile of public K-12 schools and child day-care facilities from Monday through Friday between 6am and 6pm. These include all applications by aircraft, sprinklers, air-blast and all fumigant applications. In addition most dust and/or powder pesticide applications such as sulfur would also be prohibited during this time.
- Require California growers and pest control contractors to notify public K-12 schools and child day-care facilities and county agricultural commissioners (CACs) when certain pesticide applications are made within a quarter mile of these schools and facilities.
Under the proposed regulation, California growers would be required to provide two types of notifications to a school or child day-care facility:
- An annual notification that lists all the pesticides expected to be used during the upcoming year. This must be provided to the school or child day care facility administrator by April 30 each year. The notice must include among other things:
- The name of pesticide products (and the main active ingredient) to be used
- A map showing the location of the field to be treated
- Contact information for the grower/operator and the County Agricultural Commissioner
- The web address for the National Pesticide Information Center where additional sources of information or facts on pesticides may be obtained.
- An application-specific notification which must be provided to the school or child day-care facility 48 hours before each application is made. This begins Jan 1 2018 and must include among other things:
- Name of pesticide products (and the main active ingredient) to be used;
- Specific location of the application and the number of acres to be treated;
- Earliest date and time of the application.
At least one cotton gin could be impacted significantly, possibly even shut down, by the adoption of these proposed regulations. The Association is currently reviewing the draft regulations and will be submitting comments