Maryland Laws About Pesticides

What Maryland Laws and Policies Can Help Protect Me and My Family?

Integrated Pest Management (IPM) in Schools

This law limits the use of pesticides in and around public schools. It says that pesticides can be used only after all other non-chemical choices have been exhausted or are unreasonable. At the start of the school year, all parents and school staff must be given the school’s pest control plan. They must also be given a list of pesticides that may be used during the school year.

Elementary Schools

All parents and staff must be notified at least 24 hours in advance when pesticides are to be used. They must be notified within 24 hours after they were used, if it was an emergency situation. This does not include bait stations.

Public Middle and High Schools

All parents, guardians, students and staff have the right to sign up to be notified about the use of pesticides during the school year. If they sign up they must be notified 24 hours in advance of the use of pesticides. They must be told within 24 hours after they were used due to an emergency.

Notices about pesticide use must include some of the possible health effects of those pesticides.

Full text of law can be accessed online at www.mda.state.md.us. Type in “school pesticide.”

Signs of Treated Landscaping

Warning signs must be posted by lawn care companies for 48 hours on any turf, lawn, or landscape area treated with pesticides. This does not apply to individuals who apply their own lawn care pesticides.

Full text of law, under Title 15, Ch. 01, “Regulations Pertaining to the Pesticide Applicators’ Law,” p.102-2, .15. Posting of Signs, can be accessed online.

Pesticides-Sensitive Individuals Registry

People who are sensitive to pesticides can register with the Maryland Department of Agriculture (MDA) for advance notice of lawn care pesticide use in their neighborhood. This includes professionally applied pesticides to a property next door, and across from or behind the person’s home.

MDA sometimes uses this list of pesticide-sensitive residents to notify them when pesticides will be applied by the MDA.

How to Register to Get Notified

To add your name to this list, you need a doctor’s letter stating that you are pesticide sensitive or have a condition that makes you sensitive to pesticides. (For example, if you have cancer or asthma.) Send the letter to MDA, 50 Harry S. Truman Pkwy, Annapolis, MD 21401. Call MDA at (410) 841-5710 for questions.

Full text of law, under Title 15, Ch. 01, “Regulations Pertaining to Pesticide Applicators’ Law,” p.102-6, .17 www.mda.state.md.us/plant/regs.pdf.

Maryland Pesticide Laws that Protect Our Babies, Bees, and the Bay

MPEN’s Smart on Pesticides Coalition has led passage of  four groundbreaking state pesticides laws—the  Pollinator Protection Act banning outdoor consumer products containing bee-killing neonicotinoids in 2016, a law providing for pesticide-free State Pollinator Habitat in 2017, a ban on brain-damaging Chlorpyrifos in 2019, and closed a loophole in the Pollinator Protection Act in 2020. And in 2014, a law creating a fund to support an annual pesticide use survey and pesticide use database.

Learn more about these laws.