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Kauai County Mayor Vetoes GMO Bill Passed By Council

For related articles and more information, please visit OCA's Millions Against Monsanto page  and our Hawaii News page.

LIHUE, Hawaii -Kauai County Mayor Bernard P. Carvalho, Jr. has vetoed Bill 2491, Relating to Pesticides and Genetically Modified Organisms, which was passed by the County Council on Oct. 16.

"I have always said I agree with the intent of this bill to provide for pesticide use disclosure, create meaningful buffer zones and conduct a study on the health and environmental issues relating to pesticide use on Kaua'i," said Carvalho.  "However, I believe strongly that this bill is legally flawed. That being the case, I had no choice but to veto."

Carvalho has released the opinion on 2491 drafted by the Office of the County Attorney, which was delivered to him on Oct. 24.

"Since receiving the opinion I've spent hours and hours understanding the points raised and questioning our attorneys on the legal issues," Carvalho said. "While I believe a veto is necessary, we can and will find legal means to address these important health and safety issues."

In his veto message, the mayor urges the council to move forward quickly on funding the joint fact finding study group, which is the first step toward conducting an environmental public health impact study. The study could be recommended via a resolution that is slated for next week's council agenda.

Carvalho also describes actions being taken by the governor and the State Department of Agriculture to address buffer zones and pesticide use notification.

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