Close Pesticide Loophole

March 7, 2019

What: On March 1, 2001 New York State enacted the Neighbor Notification Law to ensure advance notification of the use of pesticides to neighboring properties.  Westchester County opted into the state program in 2009 which applies to commercial pesticide applicators, property owners, retailers and homeowners.  Recent vegetation management at Willow Park, located on the corner of Curry Street and Tulip Drive, have raised questions over Yorktown’s own notification policies when addressing vegetation issues on town owned property.  


Why: Residents and employees should know when and where organic, or potentially hazardous chemicals, are being used to combat vegetation overgrowth.  The chemicals in herbicides and pesticides are known to cause cancer, birth defects, reproductive effects, neurotoxicity, kidney/liver damage and are toxic to wildlife.  

How: The town should be doing more to provide information to residents that could clam concerns before they rise.  Yorktown should enhance its notification capabilities to allow concerned residents to receive notices when vegetation management is underway at town parks and public buildings.  In addition, the town will provide an online account of vegetation management practices cataloged by property so residents can see, before arriving to their destination, if any pest management controls were applied.  

by Matt Slater

Matthew Slater graduated Yorktown High School in 2004. He was recognized by 914Inc. as a member of Westchester Wunderkinds Class of 2015 and previously worked as the Chief of Staff for New York State Senator Terrence Murphy. Prior to his time in the State Senate, he spent time as the executive director of the New Hampshire Republican Party, following the 2012 election, and formerly served as Mid-Hudson Regional Director for the New York State Assembly Minority Conference. In addition to his career in government, Slater has helped quarterback nearly all of the local elections in Yorktown for the Republican Party since 2009. In addition to serving as a field director for Yorktown GOP candidates, Slater has previously served as a top aide to Westchester County Board of Elections Commissioner Douglas Colety, a campaign manager with the New York Senate Republican Campaign Committee, Chief of Staff for State Assemblyman Steve Katz and a Regional Coordinator for the New York Republican Assembly Campaign Committee. Slater received his undergraduate degree in political science from St. Anselm College, where he was a volunteer for Rudy Giuliani's 2008 presidential bid. He holds a Masters of Public Administration from Marist College. Matt and his wife Kellie reside in Jefferson Valley and have one child.

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