by Brian Valante
HB399 is not a very exciting piece of legislature, however it does have some significance
to some members of the community. It's easy to see how this piece of legislature is important to
someone who has small children, but I feel like a large amount of people don’t care one way or
the other. As someone who does not have children I would care more about how these pesticides
are affecting the environment and less about how they could harm people. Overall I do not have
many strong opinions regarding HB399, I personally feel that most of the things mentioned in
the bill are either common sense or common courtesy. For example it mentions posting a notice
of when companies are going to spray pesticides, this seems like the obvious logical thing to do.
Which raises the question, did companies not have to do that before? Also was there state
legislation about pesticides before this? Is HB399 a completely new document or did someone
take an old bill and change a few things? I don't know the answers to these questions, and frankly
I don’t care. At this current period in time I don’t know what this piece of legislations status is. I
don’t know if it is in its final form or if it still needs to be workshopped. At first glance it raised a
few questions and the occasional clarification, however at the end of the day this is a really
simple piece of legislature. Whether it will be passed or not I am uncertain, the real question that
I wonder is does anyone care. Of course someone cares because someone had to write the thing,
and some people probably showed up to a couple of meetings to talk about it but does the
community as a whole care about this issue. As a college student I have to worry about things
like deadlines and exams, I don’t have the time or the brain capacity to seriously be concerned
about choking on pesticides as I walk to class. In the bill it mentions spraying around
playgrounds and schools, so I would hope that anyone that this effects would know about the
legislation. That being said who knows if the community as a whole is aware of this bill. I bet if I
asked a random person on the street if they knew what HB399 was they wouldn't have a clue.
Sure there's probably plenty of concerned parents out there, but there are also probably parents
that aren't concerned. Perhaps I am wrong, perhaps more people know about this issue than I
would expect. Maybe this whole process is more complex and complicated then I understand it
to be. All I know for certain is how I feel about this bill.
Students and faculty from classes on Environmental Governance and Environmental Law at Keene State College are the authors of these posts. We also invite guest authors when appropriate.
NH Science for Citizens
Department of Environmental Studies
Keene State College
Keene, NH 03431
A project of students and faculty at Keene State College in collaboration with local NH state representatives.