This bill negatively impacts water quality by exempting anyone who incidentally deposits manure, regardless of volume, on a highway, from facing misdemeanor charges. Depending on the volume of manure that is deposited on, or by, a highway, run-off could lead to similar water quality concerns that come with spreading manure on fields at improper application rates.
Due to negative water quality impacts, like nutrient loading of water and harmful algal blooms, New York State strictly regulates manure application rates on fields through the issuance of water permits. When manure is not applied at a proper soil absorption rate, winter conditions and rain events could lead to significant discharges of manure into waterways and poor ground water quality.
Given New York’s ongoing issues with nutrient loading and harmful algal blooms in waterbodies across the state, agricultural equipment that dumps large amounts of manure on roads should not be given a free pass.
This bill amends the environmental conservation law to exempt persons who incidentally deposit manure on highways from being charged with a misdemeanor.