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Washtenaw County Road Commission plans to terminate roadside herbicide plan

By Lisa Carolin

The Washtenaw County Road Commission’s plan to spray an herbicide on the roadsides in five townships has been terminated.

The Lima Township Board held a special meeting July 15 to address the subject of spraying the herbicide; However, Supervisor Craig Maier announced at the start of the meeting that the WCRC would be meeting at 1 p.m. July 16and planned to terminate the plan to spray the herbicide.

At the July 15 meeting, the Lima Township Board voted 2-2 (Elaine Bater and Nanette Havens for, Donald Laier and Maier against (Duane Luick absent) for a resolution to opt out of the herbicide spraying.

During public comment at the meeting, people complained about poor communication from the WCRC, that the WCRC mows down plants and flowers by the roadside unnecessarily, and that the chemicals being sprayed are dangerous and kill bees.

Some residents spoke about not being able to take care of their own roadside growth without the county’s help. One resident asked if the next step is to stop farmers from spraying their own land.

At the July 10 Washtenaw County Board of Commissioners meeting, dozens of residents spoke out against spraying, and the Commissioners passed a resolution that the WCRC abstain from the use of herbicides and to use alternatives that won’t cause irreparable damage.

The five townships that had been scheduled for roadside herbicide spraying program in August were Dexter, Lima, Lyndon, Sylvan and Webster Townships.

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