PALM SPRINGS — Enforcement of an ordinance that prohibits the use of gasoline-powered leaf blowers in favor of electric lawn equipment begins June 1.

The Palm Springs City Council approved the ordinance on July 19, 2017 to improve air quality and reduce noise pollution. The city delayed enforcement of the ordinance to allow more time for outreach to residents and businesses.

To that end, the Sustainability Commission is hosting an Electric Lawn Equipment Demonstration Day on Thursday, March 28 at Demuth Park Community Center between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. to assist commercial businesses and lawn and garden maintenance companies in complying with the new ordinance and promote the use of other electric lawn equipment. No equipment will be sold or exchanged during the Demonstration Day.

B&M Lawn & Garden will be on hand to help participants test electric equipment so they can select the best models for their needs. Afterwards, companies can take advantage of special pricing on equipment available through the South Coast Air Quality Management District’s (AQMD’s) Commercial Electric Lawn and Garden Incentive & Exchange Program. Details about the program and retailers can be found by clicking here.

The manufacturer Mikita is also offering discounts to commercial businesses on some electric equipment models starting April 1 only at Yoshi Lawnmower Shop.

As a reminder, the new ordinance applies to all residents of Palm Springs in addition to commercial businesses. For residential leaf blower users, the city is offering a rebate to those who turn in a working, gasoline-powered leaf blower and purchase an electric blower. The rebate is 40 percent of the price of the new electric blower up to a maximum rebate of $100.

To receive the rebate, residents must drop off their old leaf blower and purchase new electric lawn equipment at Yoshi Lawnmower Shop at 652 S. Williams Road. Residents must complete an application available at Yoshi or on the City’s website.

Although residents are welcome to attend the Demonstration Day, they must follow the guidelines of the city’s exchange program to receive a new leaf blower.

Until enforcement begins, residents and lawn care companies that operate gasoline-powered leaf blowers will be given information if they are in violation of the ordinance. Afterwards, operators will be subject to fines in incremental amounts — $100 for the first offense, $250 for the second, and $500 for the third and subsequent offenses.

Report violations by contacting the Code Enforcement Hotline at 760-778-8434 or on the GO Request App available in the App Store and Google Play.

Image Sources

  • Electric Leaf Blower: Shutterstock