Wisconsin residents may request advance notification of landscape pesticide applications – not agricultural applications. To receive this notification, people must sign up and list specific properties near their homes on the landscape registry. Professional lawn and landscape companies are required to notify individuals on the landscape registry before applying pesticides to the listed properties, so that they can take steps themselves or for children and pets to avoid possible exposure to. Chapter ATCP 29, Wis. Adm. Code also requires that signs are posted on landscape sites treated with pesticides.
The list of names, addresses and telephone numbers of those wishing to be notified of neighboring landscape applications is maintained on an annual registry. Participants may list only properties on the block where they live or any immediately adjoining blocks. No fee is required to be on the registry. The registry is provided to all the licensed landscape businesses required to provide the notice.
Businesses use a searchable, on-line database to retrieve the registry information they need when they need it. Individual registry addresses, or the entire registry listing can be exported into Excel, if preferred. The department no longer prints and distributes registry books for the lawn and landscape companies. However, the complete registry is posted online as a PDF which may be downloaded and printed. The on-line registration process has been used since December 1, 2011. Each year between November 1 and February 28, individuals must renew their addresses to remain on the registry.
528 people signed up to be on the landscape registry in 2014. Most of these people registered on-line, but we do assist participants who are not able to electronically register themselves. Participants listed 5,707 addresses for which they requested advance notification of pesticide applications in their neighborhoods. The 5,707 addresses are about half the number of participants the registry contained at its peak. The initial decline in registrations preceded the on-line registry although the first year of the on-line registry showed the largest drop. Participation on the landscape registry has stabilized the last several years.
In 2014, we updated our enforcement strategy for violations of the registry notification requirements. Businesses that do not provide proper notice receive a warning notice for the first two confirmed violations, and the third violation within the same calendar year results in a civil forfeiture.
The Department received 32 valid complaints of individuals not receiving advance notification; warning letters were sent to the application businesses. One enforcement action was initiated for a business that failed to provide adequate advanced notice to registry participants.
The lawn care industry continues to be cooperative in working with the Department to make this program successful.
Direction for the Coming Year
In 2015, we hope to improve the online registry to allow participants to identify the status of their account more easily, align the terminology for entering addresses with Department standards, and add other updates to improve the functionality for staff and the public.
For more information about any of the bureau programs you may email the department.
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