Aerial crop spraying to be sorted out by Carey council
By PETER BOLTZ
Express Staff Writer
On June 20, three Carey residents, Diana and Jerry Decker and
Kaye Sparks, presented the Carey City Council with a petition of 39 local names urging a
prohibition on "the practice of airplane [crop] spraying" within the city.
The petition states, "This practice has, among other damages,
aggravated asthma and respiratory problems (especially among our elderly), caused sickness
in our children, and nausea among adults."
Because of the close proximity of residences to crops in Carey,
"aerial applicators" those who do the flying and sprayingare allowed
to spray over homes or near enough that the spray drifts over homes and yards. This
spraying and subsequent drifting has residents, like the Deckers and Sparks, concerned for
their health and the health of children and the elderly.
According to Carey city council minutes from Aug. 17, 1999, the city
unanimously approved a motion "authorizing the mayor to prepare a form letter
approving the spraying application as long as they follow state guidelines." This
motion was a response to applicators who had requested "a letter from the city
spelling out the spraying patterns they could use."
The resulting form letter grants petitioning applicators permission to
apply pesticides/herbicides within the municipal boundaries of Carey "provided the
applicator complies with all laws, rules, and regulations
and that said applicator
does not overfly occupied structures."
The city will have a public hearing on the matter of aerial spraying at
its July 18 council meeting.