Ag Today January 3, 2018

New rules on pesticide use near schools take effect

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SALINAS >> Growers in California will have to begin notifying schools near agricultural fields what kinds of pesticides they’re planning to apply in the surrounding areas a year in advance, as prescribed by new regulations that took effect Monday.

To help growers with the process, the California Department of Pesticide Regulation has developed a website where school administrators can log in to see what these chemicals are, said Monterey County Acting Agricultural Commissioner Bob Roach.

“The notification… is something new,” Roach said. Growers will have to learn how to do the notification “with the system that’s being provided by the Department of Pesticide Regulation for that purpose.”

The new process is tied to the existing pesticide permit program, Roach said, which will make the process a bit easier.

“They have to notify to all the materials they’re likely to use, and those are going to be, for the most part, the materials they’ve used and reported in the past,” he said. “The system will make sure it’s all in the same format so it’s easily understandable to whoever needs to use it.”

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