Leaf Blowers Committee

LINKS

Leaf Blower Use Law – adopted June 19, 2018 and amended 8.14.18

Hamlet Zones List

Leaf Blower FAQs 6-26-18

To print out the regulations regarding the leaf blower law, or to read some tips on talking points, go here:
https://bedfordny.gov/leaf-blower-task-force-the-law-regulations-to-print-and-talking-tips-for-neighbors/

Westchester County law requires that landscaping contractors be registered with the County and that leaf blowers meet County emissions regulations. 

For further information please see
 https://consumer.westchestergov.com/consumer-laws/leaf-blowers.

For more information: 
Click here for the FAQs

Leaf Blowers – New Local Law  
At its June 19, 2018 meeting, the Town Board adopted a local law on the use of leaf blowers. The Board worked for months with the Leaf Blower Task Force and staff and relied heavily on feedback from members of the community, especially those who considered too stringent some ideas being reviewed. The Board adopted hours and days of use which are uniform throughout the Town.   The Board rejected certain more stringent provisions, such as complete bans, licensing of landscapers, requirement to obtain a permit, shorter leaf season. 

There are two special rules for Hamlet Zones  (which are primarily smaller lots and based on zoning districts), otherwise Hamlet Zones are treated the same as the rest of the Town.
1. No gas powered blowers during off-season
2. Year round: one leaf blower at a time, and no push behind blowers

Town Officials understand that it might take time for residents to learn about this new law and to make the necessary changes to comply with it. For that reason, we encourage you to help us spread the word by first talking to your neighbors if you see that they are not following the rules.

In the event that talking – and a bit of patience – do not result in adherence to the law, then during regular Town business hours (8:30 AM to 4:30 PM) please call Building Inspector Al Ciraco at 666-3730 or e-mail him at aciraco@bedfordny.gov. with the specifics: address, date and time of violation, and if a landscaper, the name and phone number of the landscaper (photo of the truck if available).

During off hours, please call the Police Desk at 241-3111. 

The following is a quick summary table:

EFFECTIVE AUGUST 15, 2018:
Hours Permitted for Leaf Season (September 16 through May 14) Hours Permitted Off Season  (May 15 through September 15)
Weekdays 8:00 AM through 6:00 PM Weekdays, 9:00 AM through 5:00 PM
Saturdays and Holidays: 10:00 AM through 4:00 PM (no Sundays) Saturdays and Holidays: 10:00 AM through 4:00 PM (no Sundays)
SPECIAL RULES FOR HAMLET ZONES
Year round: one leaf blower at a time and no push-behind blowers
Off -season (effective 2019):  no gas powered blowers during off season

 

BACKGROUND

More than eight years ago, several Bedford residents launched Leave Leaves Alone, an initiative to encourage residents to adopt safer, cleaner gardening practices, including replacing the practice of blowing leaves from a lawn with mulching. While many residents switched to mulching, the use of leaf blowers throughout the years appears to have increased. In March of 2017,  Leave Leaves Alone co-founder Fiona Mitchell and other residents approached the Town Board asking that the Board consider adopting a local law addressing leaf blower use due to their noise, emissions and other adverse environmental impacts (click here).  Many Westchester County municipalities have already adopted ordinances regulating leaf blowers, ranging from seasonal bans  to restrictions on the times of day during which leaf blowers may be used, and other towns are following suit. Westchester Leaf Blower Laws 

The Town Board, on December 19, 2017, appointed a Leaf Blowers Task Force (LBTF) comprised of all members of the Town Board, (ex-officio), Ms. Mitchell and Teresa Donkin as co-chairs, and other residents. The Task Force’s charge was to help inform and frame a proposed ordinance for the Town of Bedford. Considering the scientific evidence concerning air quality, human health and the environment, comments from the public, feedback from enforcement and town officials and the advice and input from landscapers, the Task Force worked with the Board in the spring of 2018,  to refine and formulate a proposal to restrict the use of leaf blowers. The Town Board passed the Leaf Blower Use Law on June 17. It will become effective in phases beginning August 15, 2018.

The Leaf Blower Task Force was reappointed by the Town Board in July 2018 and has been re-charged to support the Town in achieving a smooth implementation for residents and landscapers alike by communicating and informing the public about the purpose and benefits of the new law. The reconstituted Task Force is co-chaired by Fiona Mitchell and Helene Kopal, and staffed by Clare Sherwood, Midge Iorio, Betsy Weir, and Ken Hubener, a professional landscaper and Bedford resident. Town Board member Kate Galligan serves as the Board’s liaison to the Task Force.

The Task Force is actively seeking new members and is encouraging any resident or Bedford business person to join in the effort to facilitate the implementation of the leaf blower ordinance. We are also keenly interested in hearing your comments and ask that you provide them by email, here.

Westchester County law requires that landscaping contractors be registered with the County and that leaf blowers meet County emissions regulations.  For further information please see https://consumer.westchestergov.com/consumer-laws/leaf-blowers.

For more information:  Click here for the FAQs.

LINKS

Leaf Blower Use Law – adopted June 19, 2018 and amended 8.14.18

Hamlet Zones List

Leaf Blower FAQs 6-26-18

To print out the regulations regarding the leaf blower law, or to read some tips on talking points, go here:
https://bedfordny.gov/leaf-blower-task-force-the-law-regulations-to-print-and-talking-tips-for-neighbors/

Westchester County law requires that landscaping contractors be registered with the County and that leaf blowers meet County emissions regulations. 

For further information please see
 https://consumer.westchestergov.com/consumer-laws/leaf-blowers.

For more information: 
Click here for the FAQs

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