Bee City

Shelby has been working toward Bee City status.

Shelby City Council on Oct. 4 authorized the mayor to join the Bee City USA group with Shelby being designated as a Bee City USA affiliate.
 
“The city of Shelby, Ohio should be certified a Bee City USA community because of the sustainable efforts of a city-owned 13-acre pollinating field and the housing of privately owned beehives at the city-owned wastewater treatment plant,” Resolution 65-2021 states.

“Pollinator-friendly communities can benefit local and regional economies through healthier ecosystems, increased vegetable and fruit crop yields, and increased demand for pollinator-friendly plant materials from local growers,” the resolution also details.

Through the action, Shelby's Public Works and General Operations Committee is designated as the Bee City USA sponsor and will provide oversight to the city's program affiliation. 
 
Ensman, as the deputy director of public service, is designated as the Bee City USA liaison.

According to the resolution, through the Public Works and General Operations Committee, Shelby is to, among many tasks: 

* Host at least one educational event or pollinator habitat planting or restoration each year to showcase Shelby’s commitment to raising awareness of pollinator conservation and expanding pollinator health and habitat.

* Install and maintain at least one authorized Bee City USA street sign in a prominent location and create and maintain a webpage on the city’s website.

* Develop and implement a program to create or expand pollinator-friendly habitat on public and private land. 

This includes identifying and inventorying Shelby property that can be enhanced with pollinator-friendly plantings and creating a recommended locally native plant list. That list is to include items such as wildflowers, grasses, vines, shrubs and trees and a list of local suppliers for those species. It also calls for tracking (by square footage and/or acreage) annual area of pollinator habitat created or enhanced.

* Create and adopt an integrated pest management plan designed to prevent pest problems, reduce pesticide use and expand the use of non-chemical pest management methods.

* Consider improvements to pest management policies and practices as they relate to pollinator conservation, identify appropriate locations for pollinator-friendly plantings and consider other appropriate measures.

The resolution initially was sponsored by Councilman Martin and Councilman Derrin Roberts with Councilman Garland Gates added at the meeting as a sponsor.
 
"Mayor, this is a great piece of legislation," Gates said. "I want to thank you because I know this is something near and dear to your heart and something very worthwhile."
 
Mayor Schag said: "Councilman Gates is right. This is something that has been a project that has been in the making for some time."
 
Schag thanked Ensman and Economic Development Liaison Jessica Gribben. Schag said they "really worked hard these last several months to bring this piece of legislation to the table."

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