STEINBACH – Municipalities in the province are sick of fighting weeds with inferior products.
Cosmetic herbicides were banned two years ago, and the Association of Manitoba Municipalities wants that to change.
AMM president and Steinbach mayor Chris Goertzen says the products they have to use now are less effective and more expensive.
“We went from a budget of approximately $18,000 on beautifying our city to, if we would have kept the same services, almost $300,000. That’s just not sustainable, so our cities are not as beautiful.”
Goertzen understands the desire to use fewer chemicals, but he believes the spots they would be treating don’t pose any risks to the health of people and the environment.
“We want to be realistic in how we approach that. We want to have beautiful communities. We want to have tools at our disposal that are cost effective. Municipalities have had to resort to other types of herbicides that are less effective and also five or seven or eight times as costly.”
Going forward, Goertzen says the AMM plans to continue to lobby the government to overturn the ban.
“We think that areas that children aren’t playing in on a regular basis should be looked at in a different light. They’re not playing in ditches, in boulevards, in many parts of the community that need beautifying. We want the government to be practical about this.”