In light of what he’s calling new evidence of the safety of cosmetic pesticides, Coun. Tony Scarcella is pushing the city to rescind their cosmetic pesticide ban.
It’s been a year since the city banned cosmetic pesticide use on city parks and playing fields.
In March of this year, council gave city staff six months to prepare a report exploring options for a city-wide cosmetic pesticide ban that would extend to private properties.
Coun. Scarcella chose the June 10 city health advisory committee meeting as the venue to table plans for an about-face on the issue.
He cited a letter that was recently sent to council as proof that Health Canada had found cosmetic pesticides were safe. “Everyone should know that this 2,4-D is not a health risk,” he said.
The letter in question was recently discussed at an in-camera city meeting, but is not yet publicly available.
Scarcella also said the ban was costing the city money, though he didn’t present any figures.
Speaking at the health committee meeting Coun. Antoinette Halberstadt dismissed the letter as chemical industry propaganda, saying the authors were “basically pesticide industry.”
Committee member Jill Zacharias said the letter amounted to “wordsmithing and wordplay” and that a well-financed campaign by the pesticide industry against progressive city moves was to be expected.
“The city should stay strong and say ‘no,'” said health committee chairperson Nelli Richardson. “Why would you take the risk?”
The committee also called for a presentation from the Canadian Cancer Society (CCS) to council on the subject of pesticide safety. CCS representatives did make a presentation to the city last year, but that was at a special meeting not a council meeting.
There was indication at the health committee meeting that the issue would arise at the June 15 city committee of the whole meeting, but it did not appear on the agenda released June 11.
Revelstoke Times Review – Councillor wants to revisit pesticide ban decision.