Massachusetts Rodenticide Commission/Study Bill Heard in Committee
HB 3714, an act to create a special commission to study the effects of rat poison on wildlife, was recently heard in the Joint Environment Committee on September 10th. The bill is spearheaded by activist/journalist Laura Kiesel, who has championed various environmental causes. It is also supported by Massachusetts Raptors Are the Solution (MASS RATS) and Poison Free Arlington MA. There are parallels and similarities regarding the same organizations and strategies that pushed the rodenticide ban in CA. In August/September of 2018, MASS RATS expressed a desire to ban rodenticides in MA through a ballot initiative; however, it appears that a study bill (HB 3714) has replaced banning rodenticides through a ballot initiative for the time being. NPMA, NEPMA, MA SPARs Ted Brayton and Bill Siegal, and NEPMA President Galvin Murphy, Jr. are heavily engaged and submitted written testimony. NEPMA expressed in their written testimony that they opposed H. 3714 due to a lack of evidence that a problem exists that would prompt this bill, it deviates greatly from the scientific regulatory process, and is duplicative because our industry already employs IPM tactics and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources (MDAR) already have processes in place to evaluate pesticides to ensure that there is not adverse harm to human health and the environment.