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AB-468 Pesticides: schoolsites: glyphosate.(2019-2020)

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Date Published: 04/22/2019 09:00 PM
AB468:v97#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Assembly  April 22, 2019
Amended  IN  Assembly  March 18, 2019

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2019–2020 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill
No. 468


Introduced by Assembly Member Muratsuchi

February 11, 2019


An act to add Article 5 (commencing with Section 17618) to Chapter 5 of Part 10.5 of Division 1 of Title 1 of Section 17610.2 to the Education Code, relating to pesticides.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 468, as amended, Muratsuchi. Pesticides: schoolsites: organic landscape management practices. glyphosate.
The Healthy Schools Act of 2000 requires the Department of Pesticide Regulation to promote and facilitate the adoption of integrated pest management programs and to facilitate the least hazardous pest control policies at schoolsites, as defined. The act prohibits using certain pesticides at schoolsites, and imposes specified notice and record requirements on schools relating to the use of pesticides at schoolsites.

This bill would prohibit lawn care pesticides from being used on the outdoor spaces or playgrounds of schoolsites unless an emergency pesticide application is necessary due to an imminent threat to public health. The bill would require the department to establish organic landscape management practices for schoolsites and, on a quarterly basis, seek the advice and counsel of experts and scientists in the fields of turf and landscape management, maintenance of trees and shrubs, organic pest management, and integrated pest management protocols on fulfilling the requirements of these provisions. The bill would require the department to prioritize the implementation and enforcement of these provisions to protect school children, families, staff, and communities from the harmful effects of toxic chemical maintenance at schoolsites. Commencing January 1, 2021, the bill would require schoolsites to comply with the established organic landscape management practices. By imposing additional duties on local educational agencies in regard to their outdoor pesticide use, the bill would impose a state-mandated local program.

The California Constitution requires the state to reimburse local agencies and school districts for certain costs mandated by the state. Statutory provisions establish procedures for making that reimbursement.

This bill would provide that, if the Commission on State Mandates determines that the bill contains costs mandated by the state, reimbursement for those costs shall be made pursuant to the statutory provisions noted above.

This bill would prohibit the outdoor use at a schoolsite of a pesticide that contains glyphosate. The bill would require pest management practices employed in place of the use of glyphosate at a schoolsite to be consistent with the state policy to use effective least toxic pest management practices at schoolsites, as provided. To the extent the bill would add to the duties of schools, the bill would impose a state-mandated local program.
The California Constitution requires the state to reimburse local agencies and school districts for certain costs mandated by the state. Statutory provisions establish procedures for making that reimbursement.
This bill would provide that, if the Commission on State Mandates determines that the bill contains costs mandated by the state, reimbursement for those costs shall be made pursuant to the statutory provisions noted above.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: YES  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 The Legislature finds and declares all of the following:
(a) “Pesticides” is a collective term for a broad spectrum of chemicals whose intended purpose is to kill unwanted insects, plants, molds, and rodents. Health effects of toxic pesticide exposure ranges from acute symptoms to chronic toxicity. Pesticides can have profound impacts on the developing child, and even minute exposure has the potential to adversely affect the developing brain. Longitudinal development of the human brain continues from childhood into adulthood.
(b) The American Academy of Pediatrics indicates that, “Children encounter pesticides daily in air, food, dust, and soil and on surfaces through home and public lawn or garden application, household insecticide use, application to pets, and agricultural product residues.” The academy recommends implementing public policies that prioritize least toxic pesticide use.
(c) A report from the Department of Pesticide Regulation indicates that 178 different active pesticide ingredients were used in California schools in 2015, with the toxic herbicide glyphosate and the acute poison strychnine being the top two most used chemicals. No least toxic pesticides were among the top 10 pesticides used.

(d)According to the American Association of Poison Control Centers, in 2008 pesticides were the ninth most common substance reported to poison control centers, and approximately 45 percent of all reports of pesticide poisoning were for children.

(e)On January 20, 1998, the results of a three-day Wingspread Conference on the Precautionary Principle representing activists, scholars, and scientists from the United States, Canada, and Europe adopted the Wingspread Precautionary Principle as follows: “When an activity raises threats of harm to human health or the environment precautionary measures should be taken even if some cause and effect relationships are not fully established...”

(f)Among the findings associated with increased pesticide levels are poorer mental development measures on the Bayley Scales of Infant and Toddler Development, and increased scores on tests assessing pervasive developmental disorder, inattention, and attention deficit disorder or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.

(d) In 2015, the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) evaluated the carcinogenic risks of glyphosate and IARC Monograph 112 further classified glyphosate as “probably carcinogenic to humans,” finding a positive association for non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
(e) In July 2017, the state added glyphosate to a list of chemicals recognized as carcinogens in the Labor Code and under Proposition 65, also known as the Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986.
(f) In 2018, a California jury awarded $78 million to a school groundskeeper formerly employed by the Benicia Unified School District who was injured, including developing non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, after repeated exposure to glyphosate through his school job duties that required applying herbicides containing glyphosate.
(g) It has been reported that at least 61 cities, counties, and communities across 22 states have voluntarily considered, moved to enact, or have enacted moratoriums, restrictions, or bans on the use of glyphosate due to findings of toxicity.

(g)

(h) Children are especially vulnerable to health effects of toxic pesticide exposure because of their age-appropriate hand-to-mouth behaviors, closer proximity to the ground, higher breathing rates, and decreased ability for detoxification as compared to adults. These behaviors put children at increased risk of adverse impacts to cognitive health and hormonal development as a result of toxic pesticide exposure.

(h)The United States mandates its schools to educate our children so that they become vital contributors to society, and ensure the protection of children’s intellectual development and health in accordance with principles of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

(i)According to recent federal data, $76.6 billion is the estimated annual cost of environmentally related diseases in the nation’s children. Research published in The Lancet in 2016 indicates that pesticide exposure is the second most costly chemical group in the United States, causing an estimated 1.8 million lost intelligence quota (IQ) points and another 7,500 intellectual disability cases annually, with an estimated cost of $44.7 billion.

(j)Turf and landscapes can be managed effectively and in a cost-competitive manner without the use of toxic synthetic pesticides, making the need to use these chemicals unnecessary. According to a 2010 study prepared by Grassroots Environmental Education, data analysis demonstrates that a natural turf management program can result in a greater than 25-percent savings compared to conventional turf management.

(k)Harvard University’s implementation of an organic turf management program resulted in a 30-percent reduction in greenhouse gases, significant improvement of soil health, and reduced water use. Harvard University staff note that when soil health is improved, more pore space allows soil to increase water retention. The City of Irvine’s Athletic Fields Maintenance Practices: Annual Schedule Turf Management and Sport Turf Management has resulted in cost parity and significant reductions in water use and expense since its implementation.

(l)Soil scientists report that for every 1 percent of organic matter content, the soil can hold 16,500 gallons of plant-available water per acre down to one foot deep, or equal to 1.5 quarts of water per cubic foot of soil for each percent of organic matter.

SEC. 2.Article 5 (commencing with Section 17618) is added to Chapter 5 of Part 10.5 of Division 1 of Title 1 of the Education Code, to read:
5.Organic Landscape Management Practices
17618.

The definitions set forth in this section govern the construction of this article unless the context clearly requires otherwise:

(a)“Emergency pesticide application” means a situation where reasonable alternative methods to lawn care pesticide use have been exhausted, and application of a lawn care pesticide is necessary based on an imminent threat to public health.

(b)“Imminent threat to public health” means an unpredictable outbreak of poisonous, stinging, or biting insects, or poisonous or stinging plants that threatens public health.

(c)“Lawn care pesticide” means a pesticide registered by the United States Environmental Protection Agency and labeled pursuant to the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (7 U.S.C. Sec. 136 et seq.) for use in lawn, garden, and ornamental sites. Lawn care pesticides shall not include any of the following:

(1)A horticultural soap or oil that is registered with the United States Environmental Protection Agency that does not contain any synthetic pesticide or synergist.

(2)A pesticide classified by the United States Environmental Protection Agency as an exempt material pursuant to Section 152.25 of Title 40 of the Code of Federal Regulations.

(3)A pesticide including no active ingredients other than those published in the National List of Allowed and Prohibited Substances in Section 205.601 of Title 7 of the Code of Federal Regulations.

(d)“Organic landscape management practices” includes all of the following:

(1)Regular soil testing.

(2)Addition of soil amendments that are certified organic by the Organic Materials Review Institute, California Certified Organic Farmers, or a similar United States Department of Agriculture accredited organic certifying agency, as necessitated by results of soil tests, following, but not limited to, recommendations by appropriate organic pest management experts and scientists, including, but not limited to, the Rodale Institute, Beyond Pesticides, or the Northeast Organic Farming Association.

(3)Selection of plantings using criteria for hardiness, suitability to local native conditions, climate, drought, disease, and pest resistance, and efficiency of maintenance.

(4)Modification, as appropriate, of outdoor management practices to comply with organic horticultural science, including scouting, monitoring, watering, mowing, pruning, efficient spacing, and mulching.

(5)As-needed use of physical controls, including hand weeding and overseeding.

(6)Effective use of biological controls, including the introduction of natural predators, and enhancement of the environment of a pest’s natural enemies.

(7)Through observation, determining the most effective treatment time, based on pest biology and other variables, including weather and local conditions.

(8)Eliminating pest habitats and conditions supportive of pest population reduction and control.

(9)Upon emergency pesticide application, the notice and posting requirements are fulfilled as soon after application as practicable or as otherwise required by law.

(e)“Playground” means an improved outdoor area designed, equipped, and set aside for children’s play and shall include any play equipment, athletic field, turf, surfacing, fencing, signs, internal pathways, internal landforms, vegetation, and related structures.

(f)“Schoolsite” has the same meaning as that term is defined in Section 17609.

17618.5.

(a)Lawn care pesticides shall not be used on the outdoor spaces or playgrounds of schoolsites unless an emergency pesticide application is necessary due to an imminent threat to public health.

(b)The Department of Pesticide Regulation shall prioritize the implementation and enforcement of this section to protect school children, families, staff, and communities from the harmful effects of toxic chemical maintenance at schoolsites.

(c)(1)On or before October 1, 2020, the Department of Pesticide Regulation shall establish organic landscape management practices for the outdoor spaces and playgrounds of schoolsites, including incorporating the notice and posting requirements for emergency pesticide applications proscribed in Section 17612.

(2)Commencing January 1, 2021, schoolsites shall comply with the organic landscape management practices established by the Department of Pesticide Regulation pursuant to paragraph (1).

(d)The Department of Pesticide Regulation shall, on a quarterly basis, seek the advice and counsel of experts and scientists in the fields of turf and landscape management, maintenance of trees and shrubs, organic pest management, and integrated pest management protocols on fulfilling the requirements of this article.

SEC. 3.

If the Commission on State Mandates determines that this act contains costs mandated by the state, reimbursement to local agencies and school districts for those costs shall be made pursuant to Part 7 (commencing with Section 17500) of Division 4 of Title 2 of the Government Code.

SEC. 2.

 Section 17610.2 is added to the Education Code, to read:

17610.2.
 (a) The outdoor use at a schoolsite of a pesticide that contains glyphosate is prohibited.
(b) Pest management practices employed in place of the use of glyphosate at a schoolsite shall be consistent with the policy stated in Section 13182 of the Food and Agricultural Code.
(c) This section does not preclude a school district from adopting or enforcing stricter pesticide use policies.

SEC. 3.

 If the Commission on State Mandates determines that this act contains costs mandated by the state, reimbursement to local agencies and school districts for those costs shall be made pursuant to Part 7 (commencing with Section 17500) of Division 4 of Title 2 of the Government Code.