Protect Florida's Waters: Sign to have Orange County have a Robust Fertilizer Ordinance

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Please Read and Sign (and share) this petition if you agree with the following:

May 27, 2017

Dear Mayor Jacobs and Orange County Commissioners,

Good day. I am writing to show my support for a strong New Fertilizer Ordinance in Orange County, to stand in solidarity with other Florida counties that have adopted strong ordinances, including summer bans and restrictions. Florida’s water is a vital precious environmental resource needed for citizens and the economy to thrive. Unfortunately, our waterways are most commonly impaired from too much nitrogen and phosphorus. Fertilizers contain nitrogen and/or phosphorous --  During the rainy season, summer rains wash these excess nutrients into our lakes, rivers and water bodies, damaging what makes this state so beautiful and impairing our precious resource.

Therefore, a strong Fertilizer Ordinance in Orange County is necessary to ensure we feed our grass responsibly, to prevent these nutrients from entering the water and further degrading it.

The good news is there are many ways to keep our yards beautiful, while also keeping algae-feeding nitrogen and phosphorus out of our waterways.

Summer blend fertilizer formulations, containing iron, and other micro-nutrients, but no nitrogen or phosphorus, are already being used by industry professionals and many varieties are available in retail settings.

As a proud Floridian, I support a regional approach to fertilizer restrictions, which would greatly help in improving water quality and would also make compliance easier for professional applicators. A regional example of an excellent fertilizer ordinance is the one recently adopted by Seminole County, effective February 28, 2017 to begin enforcement on October 1, 2017. Orange County should very seriously consider adopting an ordinance like that of Seminole County. *One addition to Seminole's provisions that would make compliance easier for homeowners, would be a requirement for retailers to display point-of-sale signage, informing the public of the basic fertilizer restrictions found in the ordinance. Please find the provisions below to be implemented into a strong, New, Orange County Fertilizer Ordinance:

·         Fertilizer containing nitrogen or phosphorous cannot be applied to turf during the restricted season from June 1st – September 30th.  Fertilizers containing Iron, Manganese and other "micro-nutrients" also referred to as "summer blends" can be applied during the restricted season to keep lawns healthy and green (as recommended by Florida Yards Neighborhood/Florida Friendly Landscape Program).

·         Fertilizer containing nitrogen that is used during the non-restricted season (October 1st – May 31st) must contain at least 50% or more slow release nitrogen. This slow release nitrogen content will increase to 65%, three (3) years after adoption of the Fertilizer Ordinance to allow time for educational outreach to residents and retailers.

·         Fertilizer containing phosphorus cannot be applied to turf or plants unless a state certified soil or tissue test verifies that there is a phosphorus deficiency. 

·         No fertilizer may be applied within fifteen (15) feet of any pond, lake, stream, canal, or other water body, including wetlands.

·         “Point of Sale” signage requirements, including language which states: "Any business that sells fertilizer shall post a notice provided by Orange County stating that the use of lawn and landscape fertilizers is restricted in accordance with this article.”

The overall goal of these provisions is to minimize excess fertilizer runoff and protect the County’s natural water resources. I urge you to adopt these provisions into a strong NEW Orange County Fertilizer Ordinance. Our Florida waters depend on your leadership.

Thank you so much for your time and consideration in this very important matter and for all that you to for Orange County, we are grateful for your efforts.

Best regards,

(Your Name Here)

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ADDITIONALLY: After signing and sharing this petition, Please consider taking the time NOW to write your own email to the Mayor and the County Commissioners in regards to this topic as well. We need as many people on public record with this petition as possible, folks. Thank you.

Their emails:
mayor@ocfl.net, district1@ocfl.net, district2@ocfl.net, district3@ocfl.net, district4@ocfl.net, district6@ocfl.net, district5@ocfl.net,

*Feel free to use any of the talking points provided here.
Let them know if you are a resident/constituent as well.
They especially need to hear from you and anyone in the science community, I might add. 

We cannot thank you enough for taking direct action. 



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