People’s Ban on Aerial Spray Being Challenged

People’s Ban on Aerial Spray Being Challenged


Friday, June 9, 2017



Media Contacts

Maria Sause                                                                         Rio Davidson                                          

541 574 2961; cell 541 961 6385                                    cell 541 961 5606


NEWPORT, Oregon - On June 6th, one day after the vote to enact Measure 21-177 became official, a lawsuit challenging the law was filed by Rex Capri of Newport. Capri’s first claim raises two arguments about the new law that were both rejected by the court before the election, and also alleges that the county lacks the authority to address pesticides. His second claim asserts that state preemption overrides the new law adopted by the people, banning aerial spray of pesticides.

Mr. Capri is represented by Davis Wright Tremaine of Portland, who is also attorney of record for Oregonians for Food and Shelter, the corporate lobbyist organization for chemical and timber corporations. Oregonians for Food and Shelter contributed $33,000 to the No on 21-177 campaign.

“It’s obvious that the lawsuit isn’t coming from the person listed but from the chemical and timber corporations that profit from the poisons”, says Maria Kraus of Citizens for a Healthy County. “It’s also obvious that we expect our local government to stand up for our rights to clean water and to say no to toxic chemical exposures.”

Measure 21-177 or the Freedom from Aerially Sprayed Pesticides Ordinance of Lincoln County, written to protect the right to clean water and to be free from toxic trespass, would not go into effect until early July.

It is unclear at this time if the plaintiff’s property is even suitable for aerial pesticide spraying. In addition, there is nothing keeping the property owner from spraying weeds by other methods or using alternative weed abatement.

The claim that Measure 21-177 is preempted by state law completely ignores the right of the people of Lincoln County to self-government powers on matters of health, safety, and welfare. For the state to allow the practice of aerial spraying at all violates both the right to local self-government and the right to clean water, air, soil, and freedom from toxic trespass.

“State law grants a license to kill while denying any recourse from victims or local governments,” says Carol Van Strum, herbicide historian.

There is no indication at this time how long this case will delay implementation of the new law.

Citizens for a Healthy County
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You TubeVote Yes on 21-177 to Ban Aerial Pesticide Spraying

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Measure 21-177 wins the May 2017 Election in Lincoln County, Oregon

 Lincoln County Bans Aerial Pesticide Spraying


Measure 21-177 increases its lead to 61 votes, winning a highly contested election


Tuesday, May 30, 2017



Media Contacts:

Maria Sause                                           Rio Davidson               

541 574 2961; cell 541 961 6385          cell 541 961 5606

Newport, Oregon – A majority of voters who returned to sign unsigned ballots approved Measure 21-177, bringing the total vote to 6994 for the ban versus 6933 against it, making the ban on aerial pesticide spraying in Lincoln County a reality. Thanks to the many people who volunteered and campaigned so valiantly, the vast amounts spent by corporate opponents failed to convince voters that profits are more important than health, safety, and the right to informed consent.


By this victory, Lincoln County is the first county in the United States to ban aerial spraying of pesticides by the vote of the people. This is not the first time Lincoln County has spoken truth to power and won.

“Back in 1976, folks here put Lincoln County on the map by winning a huge landmark case against the United States government, stopping federal spraying of Agent Orange on our forests and homes and waterways,” said Susan Parker Swift. “Now Lincoln County has done it again. I couldn’t be prouder to share this repeat victory!”

Barbara Davis, co-petitioner of measure 21-177, says our win brought to her mind the following quote by Margaret Mead:

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever has.”

This election was the first major hurdle Measure 21-177 had to overcome to become a reality. Implementation of the measure, and the obstacles to it that opponents will raise, among them superior “rights” to override the rights of the people, including the people’s right to vote and their constitutional right to safety, are next. Citizens for a Healthy County will continue to meet those challenges, and welcomes all who are willing to join us in the effort.



Citizens for a Healthy County

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