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Hearing Set For South Coast On Proposal To Toughen Rules On Pesticide Use Near Schools

A state agency is holding a public hearing on the South Coast tonight on a proposal to require growers to notify K-12 schools, day care facilities and county agricultural commissioners about pesticide use near school sites.

The California Department of Pesticide Regulation is proposing new rules which would require farmers to share their planned spraying dates for each upcoming year, and re-notify those on the list a few days before the actual application. The use of some specific pesticides would also be limited.

The state agency is holding a hearing on the proposal beginning at six tonight, at the Oxnard Performing Arts Center in Oxnard. Pesticide use near schools has been a controversial issue for years in Ventura County, with some people worried about kids safety, while growers saying they use treatments responsibly.