The Office of the County Executive, County of Santa Clara, set out to craft an innovative Integrated Pest Management (IPM) ordinance to govern pest management – and terminate use of toxic pesticides – in all county buildings and grounds.
Bluhon facilitated a consensus-based drafting process with an appointed technical advisory group with the technical support of an IPM expert. The advisory group consisted of county, citizen advocacy, and independent agencies including: the Pesticide Alternatives of Santa Clara County; Santa Clara Valley Water District; the County Agricultural Commissioner; Santa Clara County Pollution Prevention Committee; and county departments including Roads and Airports, Parks and Recreation, General Services, Valley Health and Hospital System, and Occupational Safety and Environmental Compliance. The consensus process consisted of six months of plenary advisory group meetings where stakeholders crafted the ordinance line by line.
Bluhon managed communication among group members, communication between the technical expert and the advisory group, and helped the group achieve consensus on controversial, science-intensive issues. The process resulted in a unanimously supported ordinance, which the County Board of Supervisors subsequently ratified, enacted, and continues to implement today.