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Passage of GMO ban in San Luis Obispo would encourage use of harsh pesticides

Voters in San Luis Obispo County are being encouraged by the American Society of Plant Biologists (ASPB) to vote "No" on November Ballot Measure Q. By banning the growing of genetically modified crops, Measure Q would encourage the continued widespread use of harsh chemical pesticides in farming. ASPB President Roger Hangarter, Professor at Indiana University, and ASPB Committee on Public Affairs Chair Pamela Ronald, Professor at University of California, Davis, sent a letter today to the Chair of the San Luis Obispo County Board of Supervisors Harry Ovitt explaining the need to oppose the proposed ban on GMOs.

Following is the letter sent by ASPB:

October 20, 2004

Mr. Harry Ovitt
Chairperson
San Luis Obispo County Board of Supervisors
Room 370, County Government Center
San Luis Obispo, California 93408

Dear Mr. Ovitt:

The American Society of Plant Biologists (ASPB) urges you and your fellow voters in San Luis Obispo County to oppose Measure Q on the local ballot November 2.

If passed, Measure Q Section 2 would make it unlawful for any person or entity to propagate, cultivate, raise, or grow genetically engineered organisms in San Luis Obispo County.

If the Agricultural Commissioner determines there has been a violation of this Ordinance proposed under Measure Q, in addition to confiscation and destruction of any organisms that are found to be in violation, Measure Q calls for the Agricultural Commissioner to impose a monetary penalty on the person, firm, or corporation responsible for the violation, taking into account the amount of damage, any potential damage, and the willfulness of the person, firm, or corporation.

Measure Q's exemption from the ban on growing GE crops for university-based agricultural research does not apply to field testing.
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Contact: Brian Hyps
bhyps@aspb.org
301-251-0560
American Society of Plant Biologists
20-Oct-2004


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