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Ancram farmer worries about pond pesticides

May 14, 2016 12:03 am
Diane Valden in The Columbia Paper reports that an Ancram farmer who has been certified organic since 1988 is worried about losing that label if a neighbor is allowed to use pesticides in a pond. Farmer Donald MacLean, speaking during an April 21 public hearing on the town’s Right to Farm Law, said the proposed law does not address, “practices by non-farmers that could adversely affect a farmer’s ability to farm.” He's worried about the fruits, berries, vegetables, and grains that grow on his Thompson-Finch Farm at 750 Wiltsie Bridge Road because Camp Pontiac wants to apply herbicides and algaecides to Lower Rhoda Pond. Camp Pontiac, a sleep-away summer camp at 2044 County Route 7 has applied to the state Department of Environmental Conservation to use several pesticides to control nuisance aquatic vegetation for better swimming and boating. MacLean doesn't want those pesticides flowing from the Lower Rhoda into Long Lake and then the Roeliff Jansen Kill, where, he fears, it could cost him the approval of the Northeast Organic Farming Association of New York. The DEC is accepting comments on this project at:
Patricia M. Gabriel, NYSDEC Region 4 Headquarters, 1130 North Westcott Road, Schenectady 12306.
The Ancram Town Board considers the Right to Farm Law at a 7 p.m. May 19.