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The staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Tea party mobilizing to oppose summer lawn fertilizer ban

The tea party is mobilizing to fight a Hillsborough County ordinance that would ban nitrogen-based lawn fertilizer during summer months. Environmental protection groups say nitrogen runoff during the rainy season pollutes local waterways. The bans have grown popular throughout the state in recent years. A move by state lawmakers, backed by retailers and the agriculture industry, to prohibit the local bans failed in the past legislative session. The Hillsborough County Commission, meeting as the Environmental Protection Commission, is scheduled to consider a ban Thursday. A group identifying themselves only as a "coalition of concerned citizens and business people" has been making robocalls in Hillsborough, urging people to tell commissioners to reject the ban.

A new tea party "meet-up" group also has formed to oppose the ban. Here's a copy of an e-mail they sent out:

TIME TO STOP THE TAKEOVER OF OUR COUNTY COMMISSION BY THE SIERRA CLUB AND OTHER ENVIRONMENTAL GROUPS PUSHING THEIR "SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT" AGENDA

Bankrupt state of California is NOT a MODEL to Follow!
County Commissioners received 150 letters from the Sierra Club SUPPORTING this ban on Friday
Please contact the Commissioners Today in OPPOSITION:

Hillsborough County Commissioners will VOTE on the PROPOSED Fertilizer Ban at their regular meeting on Thursday, June 10th. The meeting is scheduled for 9:00 a.m. on Thursday, June 10th at the County Center, which is located at 601 E. Kennedy Blvd. in Tampa.

If attending, there is a time for public comment if you want to voice your opposition:
People wishing to speak before the Board during the Public Comments portion of the meeting should
complete the Request for Public Comment card located at the sign-up table inside the Boardroom. When Addressing the Board, please state your name and address. Three minutes are allowed for each speaker.
Also, if attending, even if not speaking, please try to wear some type of sticker or pin on a label that
reflects your Opposition (e.g. Vote NO on Fertilizer Ban).

NOTE: This Ban specifically EXEMPTS golf courses, large Agriculture and large farms. Instead, at this juncture, the Sierra Club/environmentalists are going after the "little guy" who fertilizes his own yard or those in business today who perform that work. Even by the Sierra Club's OWN estimates, this ban would reduce nitrogen in our waterways by .08%.

Plant City on Monday voted to "exempt" them from this ban if the Commission votes for it stating
"the technical information that Hillsborough scientists have submitted in support of the ban as 'anecdotal.' "

This issue is also tied to the EPA Water Quality Standards that the EPA is attempting to ONLY IMPOSE on State of Florida and will devastate our economy. These proposals are the result of lawsuits filed by
environmental groups such as the Sierra Club:

http://files.meetup.com/1395436/Proposed%20EPA%20Water%20Quality%20Standards.doc

Learn more here:

http://www.meetup.com/Tampa-Tea-Party/calendar/13669289/

Janet Zink, Times staff writer

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[Last modified: Thursday, September 16, 2010 3:40pm]

    

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