Municipal Ordinances & Resolutions
Some towns have enacted ordinances and policies that benefit pollinators by banning the use of pesticides and other chemicals while others have passed policies and resolutions adopting, and urging their residents to adopt, pollinator-friendly practices. Municipalities who lead by example can be instrumental in changing the way their residents approach lawn and yard care. Listed below are the actions taken by different towns, please consider asking your town to pass a similar ordinance or resolution to help create healthier and more welcoming habitat for pollinators and people alike!
Here is a map of municipalities that have passed pesticide restrictions more stringent than those of their state government.
If your town, county, or state has legislation that should be listed, please let us know by emailing
Municipal rights to set pesticide policy are under attack at the national level! Congressional bill H.R. 7266 would preempt and nullify the local ordinances we are all working on passing. Tell your U.S. Representative and Senators to support communities by opposing H.R. 7266 and supporting the Protect America’s Children from Toxic Pesticides Act (PACTPA), which contains a provision affirming local authority to restrict pesticides.
Municipal Ordinances, Regulations & Policies
Town of Newtown, Native Plant Policy for Municipal Properties, September 2021. A minimum standard requirement for all new plantings of trees, shrubs and other plants on municipal properties. It also applies to seeds used in place of plants. The policy applies to any replacement plantings, including but not limited to trees, shrubs, and perennials felled by storms, disease, redevelopment/expansion, or other reasons. New and replacement plantings for trees, grasses and ground covers must be 100% native. New and replacement plantings of shrubs must be 85% native. New and replacement plantings of herbaceous perennials must by 75% native.
Town of Newtown, Text Amendments to Town of Newtown Zoning Regulations – Article VIII – Supplemental Regulations, Section 4 – Landscape, Screening and Buffer Requirements, December 25, 2021. Non-native invasive and potentially invasive plant species listed on the current CT Invasive Plant List and updated annually by the Connecticut Invasive Plant Working Group (CIPWG) shall not be used in the landscaping. Native plants are required in the landscape plan and applies to any new or replacement plantings. New and replacement plantings for trees, grasses and ground covers must be 100% native. New and replacement plantings of shrubs must be 85% native. New and replacement plantings of herbaceous perennials must by 75% native.
Town of Ridgefield, Policy on the Use of Native Plants on Town-Owned Property, 100% of new and replacement trees, shrubs, herbaceous perennials, and ground cover plantings on municipal properties will be native to the Northeast. The policy also applies to any replacement plantings, including but not limited to trees, shrubs, and perennials felled by storms, disease, redevelopment/expansion, or other reasons. The policy also applies to seeds used in place of plants.
Town of Wilton – Zoning Regulations Section 29.5C - Regulations pertaining to all residential districts.
Wilton Plan of Conservation and Development (POCD) – Section 2.4 Conserve & Enhance Habitats. “To require native plants when a landscape plan is required for a project per zoning regulations. Encourage native plants even when a landscape plan is not required.”
Norwalk Pesticide Ordinance - The City of Norwalk created an ordinance to promote a healthy environment that protects its residents, waterways, and wildlife from the risks inherent in pesticides by prohibiting or restricting their use on all City-owned public grounds, including but not limited to, parks, beaches, trails, recreation centers, and playgrounds.
The City of Stamford has enacted Ordinance No. 1279 Supplemental prohibiting the use and application of pesticides and other non-organic substances on city-owned properties.
Tree Ordinances and Regulations
City of Somerville Ordinance No. 2021-05, March 25, 2021, Somerville, MA. Section 12-177 Native Plant Requirements. All new plantings shall consist of native plants only in Riparian areas, The community path, The green line extension rail corridor, bioswales, plaza’s, streetscapes and other city-owned properties. A minimum of 75% native plantings in parks. A minimum of 50% native street trees planted by the city each year to increase in subsequent years.
NY State Association of Conservation Commissions has created an Environmental Ordinance Library where you can find examples of ordinances for your community. Ordinance Library | NYSACC | New York State Association of Conservation Commissions
Westchester County - Executive Order No. 10 of 2018 (As amended)
1. “Plant materials native to Westchester County and Northeast or their cultivars shall be used exclusively in designing, planting, maintaining, and managing the landscape features of all County roadsides, parks, public areas, and other County properties and facilities.”
2. “Plans and specifications for any Westchester County contract involving landscaping and/or plantings shall, where practical and appropriate, require the use of native plants.”
“All planting used to satisfy landscaping and landscaped area requirements shall be comprised of at least 70% native plant species… remaining 30%, non-native species which are not invasive plants.”
Town of Greenburgh, NY Street Tree Inventory & Management Plan. If your town is considering passing a tree ordinance or updating its Tree Management Plan. We think Greenburgh's plan is a good one to use as a model.
“All major subdivisions and land development plans shall contain a Landscape Plan approved before construction and as part of the subdivision/land development approval process which shall address the conservation of the natural landscape to enhance the development and to protect surrounding areas. All required plants shall be Native Plants.”
Township of Schuylkill, PA. General Legislation/Subdivision and Land Development, #3220-34 Screening, Landscape and Buffering – “Plant materials chosen to satisfy screening and landscape requirements or to supplement existing vegetation shall be selected from Schuylkill Township Native Plant List”.
“The county shall use only native plant species in the development of new landscaped areas and in rehabilitation of existing landscaped areas on county property such as parks and areas surrounding buildings.”
Municipal Resolutions and Proclamations
Many pathway groups have approached their city or town leaders—mayors or city council members—and asked if their municipality would formally join the Pollinator Pathway. The towns leaders that have done this, some of which are listed below, have had read a proclamation/resolution, publicly into the town record.
Click on the link below to view each town's resolution/proclamation.
Sustainable CT/Windham brought this resolution to the Town Council on behalf of the Pollinator Pathways project through our town, where it was unanimously endorsed.
Pequonnock River Watershed Based Plan - Watershed-wide (Monroe, Trumbull and Bridgeport)
“Encourage native rather than non-native species and educate the public, municipalities, and landowners about the importance and identification of native tree species. Work with the municipalities to require the use of native tree species in land development and redevelopment projects and to use native tree species in municipal projects.”
West Norriton Township, PA – Resolution No. 18-1613 Resolution of the Board of Commissioners in support of the use of Native Plants: “West Norriton Township shall make every reasonable effort to ensure that all properties owned or controlled by the Township use a minimum of 80% native plants in new plantings and move as quickly as possible to achieve that goal.” “The West Norriton Township Environmental Advisory Council and other elected and appointed officials will educate and empower residents with the goal of transitioning at least 50 percent of Township private properties to include no less than 20% native plants.”
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