Notice to Homeowners: Leaf Blower Ban Still On
The City of Rye passed a seasonal leaf blower ban in 2008 to improve the quality of life and reduce air and noise pollution. But as Rye Sustainability Committee chair Melissa Grieco noted in remarks to the City Council last month, far too many homeowners and their landscapers fail to follow the law, which prohibits the use of leaf blowers between May 1 and September 30.
It’s frustrating to observe,” began Grieco. “Eighty percent of the energy required to run a blower comes from non-renewable matter. Leaf blowers are the new secondhand smoke. They emit a hurricane force of air, which blows away nutrient-rich topsoil and causes respiratory issues and hearing and eye damage.”
In Grieco’s opinion, “Residents need an attitude adjustment. We don’t need to forcibly blow away every speck of dust. We do need to come up with a better way to enforce the law.”
She and fellow Sustainability Committee member Gretchen Crowley had a conversation with Rye Police Department officers during which the officers recommended the burden be put back on the homeowner, which other communities have done. “We’ve heard homeowners in Rye actually press landscapers to use leaf blowers. And since many landscapers who work here don’t live here they ignore any violations received.”
The Sustainability Committee did, several years ago, print up flyers in both English and Spanish to educate and remind owners and crew of the law.
Mayor Josh Cohn said it might be time to “catch up with the scofflaws” who come at the same time every week.