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Published: Sunday, 1/23/2011

Hearing on pesticides in Lake Erie basin is set


State officials are to hold a public hearing Thursday in Columbus that could affect how large-parcel landowners in the Lake Erie basin apply pesticides this spring.

The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency is creating a system under which certain landowners will have to obtain permits and follow upcoming procedures by April 9. The program is in response to a federal court ruling that requires pesticide discharges in, over, or near surface waters to be regulated.

It will apply to businesses and property owners maintaining 640 land acres, 20 water acres, or 20 linear miles of stream or stream bank. Pests such as gypsy moths are identified, as are nuisance plants such as algae. Much of the water being protected drains into Lake Erie. The rules also will apply to wetlands. Ottawa County is among the state's leaders in marsh acreage.

The hearing is scheduled for 10:30 a.m. at the Ohio EPA's office in Lazarus Government Center, 50 West Town St. Written comments will be accepted through Feb. 3.

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