Report Title:

Herbicides in Public Parks

Description:

Requires all state agencies to discontinue use of herbicides and to maintain public parks with nonchemical means.

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

H.B. NO.

1037

TWENTY-SECOND LEGISLATURE, 2003

 

STATE OF HAWAII

 


 

A BILL FOR AN ACT

 

RELATING TO THE USE OF HERBICIDES IN PUBLIC PARKS.

 

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF HAWAII:

SECTION 1. The maintenance of Hawaii's public parks presently involves the use of herbicides. There is growing evidence that the use of herbicides may be harmful to human health, and there is growing concern about their contribution to nonpoint source pollution of streams and coastal and ground water, as well as to soil erosion. The legislature finds that, on the island of Hawaii, in Hilo, five county beach parks have been maintained using environmentally sound and aesthically pleasing nonchemical methods since 1991. The legislature further finds that no additional funding was needed to accomplish this. Therefore, there is no provision in this Act for additional funding, as it is unnecessary.

Accordingly, the purpose of this Act is to require that all state and county agencies responsible for the maintenance of public parks, maintain the parks using environmentally sound and aesthetically pleasing, nonchemical methods.

SECTION 2. Chapter 184, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by adding a new section to be appropriately designated and to read as follows:

"184-    Use of herbicides to be discontinued in the maintenance of public parks. (a) All state governmental agencies responsible for the maintenance of public parks shall rely on nonchemical methods to control vegetation growth.

(b) "Nonchemical methods" means:

(1) Using mechanical means such as mowing, side cutting, weed whacking, torch burning, or hot water (steam) applications;

(2) Planting weed resistant low-growing ground cover or mulching hard to treat areas; and

(3) Utilizing community groups and "adopt a park", as well as other work resources, for extra hands or special projects."

SECTION 3. The department of land and natural resources shall develop and implement a plan for the phased reduction of herbicide use in the maintenance of public parks and report the nature and progress of the plan to the legislature twenty days prior to the convening of the 2004 regular session. The department of land and natural resources shall encourage and assist the counties to join and comply with the scheduled ban of herbicide use in public parks.

SECTION 4. New statutory material is underscored.

SECTION 5. This Act shall take effect upon its approval.

INTRODUCED BY:

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