County Executive Elrich Signs Bill Banning The Sale and Use of Gas-Powered Leaf Blowers and Leaf Vacuums by July 2025

Per Montgomery County: Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich today signed Bill 18-22, Noise Control – Leaf Removal Equipment, into law. This new law will phase out the sale and use of gas-powered leaf blowers and leaf vacuums.
“With the signing of this bill into law, we are addressing the negative impacts of gas-powered leaf blowers and putting the health and safety of all our community members first,” said County Executive Marc Elrich. “As our next step, we will be designing a rebate program to accompany the phase-out to ease the transition to electric leaf equipment.  I want to thank all the members of the community who laid out the need for this legislation and advocated tirelessly.”

Leaf blower

“The keywords with this bill are phasing out and phasing in,” said Jon Monger, director of the County’s Department of Environmental Protection. “We are phasing out gas powered leaf blowers and phasing in electric leaf blowers over the next two years. We designed this legislation to give landscape companies, independent landscapers and the public ample time to comply with the law.”

The new law will:

  •  Prohibit sale of handheld, backpack, and walk-behind gas-powered leaf blowers and leaf vacuums starting July 1, 2024.
  • Prohibit use of handheld, backpack, and walk-behind gas-powered leaf blowers and leaf vacuums starting July 1, 2025.
  • Authorize a rebate program to begin on July 1, 2024, and run through Dec. 2026 to partially offset the cost of replacing a gas-powered leaf blower or leaf vacuum with an electric leaf blower or leaf vacuum.
  • Exempt the use of gas leaf-blower equipment for agricultural producers.
  • Maintain noise ordinance limits for leaf blowers and leaf vacuums not to exceed 70 decibels at 50 feet.

DEP will work with local landscape businesses and independent landscapers to help implement this transition. DEP will meet with community organizations and landscapers to help them understand the law and assist with accessing the rebate program. DEP will also communicate the phase-out in multiple languages through public awareness campaigns and direct engagement with businesses and communities.

DEP is asking landscapers in Montgomery County to answer a five-minute survey to help provide perspective on the design of the rebate program that is authorized in the legislation. The survey can be found in English at  https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/KWKQLBJ and in Spanish at https://www.es/surveymonkey/r/7C8BY22.

On Sept. 26, the Montgomery County Council passed Bill 18-22 by a vote of 10 to 1.

For more information on Bill 18-22, click here.  To watch the Council session, click here.

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