200607 Water, land use conflict and regulatory reform: A case study

Monday, November 9, 2009: 8:30 AM

Randolph Garney , Interim Public Health Director, Genesee County Health Department, Batavia, NY
Donald W. Rowe, PhD , Office of Public Health Practice, University at Buffalo, School of Public Health and Health Professions, Buffalo, NY
As the urbanization of rural America continues there are inevitable consequences. Land that was farmed is converted to non agricultural uses such as housing, commerce and industrial development. The remaining agricultural land is often intensely farmed in close proximity to family homes where ground water is the source of potable water. In New York State there are regulations that permit the controlled application of digested animal waste as an effective way of recycling nutrients and minimizing the over application of chemical fertilizers. In this case study drinking water was alleged to have become contaminated with animal waste resulting from an accepted practice regulated by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. A detailed 6 month inter-jurisdictional agency investigation, involving three departments of NYS government and a local rural health department was conducted in 2008 . Analysis of water samples, interpretation of cross-jurisdictional regulations and protection under agricultural law were scrutinized. The end result was the extension of public water, increased multi-jurisdictional collaboration and the modification of agricultural practice regulation designed to minimize the future impact on public health. The details of this case are provocative and reflect the importance of water as a catalyst for regulatory reform.

Learning Objectives:
Describe the cross jurisdictional investigatory process list three land use conflict issues Explain the catalytic role of water in regulatory reform Assess the sampling methodology Explain the importance of cross jurisdictional regulatory reform in public health protection

Keywords: Water, Policy/Policy Development

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am the former Public Health Director for Genesee County and have worked with the first author for 20 years. I am the Director of the Office of Public Health Practice at the University at Buffalo, School of Public Health and Health Profession
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.