Despite passing an organic policy in 2018, with the exception of the Stonyfield PlayFree initiative organic site at Woodman Park School, for the second year in a row Dover has chosen to go with a conventional program using toxic pesticides, synthetic fertilizer and sewage sludge on public turf areas. This includes:
☠️ City Hall – 288 Central Avenue
☠️ Public Library – 73 Locust Street
☠️ Upper Henry Law Park – corner of Washington Street and Henry Law Avenue
☠️ Lower Henry Law Park – Pool Parking Lot to River St
☠️ Upper Square – (3) islands on Central Avenue between 2 and 3 Streets
☠️ Shaw’s Lane Athletic Fields – intersection of Back River Road / Garrison Road and off Shaw’s Lane
a. 2 softball fields
b. 3 full size soccer fields
c. 1 practice soccer / multi-purpose field
☠️ McConnell Center, 61 Locust St
☠️ Maglaras Park 2 ball field on Henry Law
a – Guppy Park ball field Portland Ave
b – Point Place, Applevale Ball Park
☠️ Sullivan Dr Ball Field
☠️ Longhill Multi Purpose field
☠️ Garrison park ball field
☠️ North End Fire Station 262 Sixth St
The reason for this is that our “budget” for turf services has historically been choosing the cheapest bid. In fact, what we spend on mowing services just for the athletic fields is twice as much as what we spend on turf services. This has no rhyme or reason.
This isn’t an ideal way to go about things, and now that we have an organic policy it’s well past time that the city implement it. This requires an initial investment, and it’s one that can be adjusted by the expert consultant we are working with so we don’t break the bank.
Organic is cost effective, and costs less over time, but the cost up front will be more than we have been used to paying.
What that extra cost will end up being will depend on the program for next year, soil and field conditions and how the bid is written.
For instance, the bid put out this spring was separated by sites. This means that when the organic vendor bid on it they needed to price it as if they were coming out only to do each individual site. The prices were more than if they were to have been awarded all of the sites together. This is because they needed to be sure they were able to pay the subcontractors doing the work as each was coming from a distance. They ended up being awarded the Woodman Park site, and so the bid was appropriate for that. However if they had been awarded all of them, then we would not have necessarily been invoiced for the total amount of all those mini-bids together.
These details can be worked out by the city, our expert consultant, and the vendor.
In order to stop violating the policy and start implementing our organic program next spring, Dover residents will need to ask the City Council to direct the City Manager to allocate the necessary funds to get started.
☎️ TAKE ACTION: call the city Council today
Tel: (603) 743-6894
Deputy Mayor Carrier
Tel: (603) 396-0204
City Councilor, At-Large
Tel: (603) 534-2119
City Councilor, Ward 1
Tel: (603) 842-0029
City Councilor, Ward 2
Tel: (603) 817-3135
City Councilor, Ward 3
Tel: (603) 988-1736
City Councilor, Ward 4
Tel: (603) 534-2723
City Councilor, Ward 5
Tel: (603) 534-3750
Role: City Councilor, Ward 6
Tel: (603) 534-7829
Here is a sample email that you can send:
Subject: Please Fund Our Organic Turf Program
Dear City Council,
I am a Dover resident and the health of our soil, water and future generations are important to me. I believe that this is a worthy investment and would like to ask you to please allocate funds to cover the cost of implementing an organic turf program on all city property next spring.