Gas-powered blowers may be addressed by St. Petersburg city council

Noise is just part of the issue.

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. - Many of us have gotten used to using a gas powered blower to take care of grass clippings and leaves.  It's also become a vital tool for professional landscapers.

"If I didn't have the leaf blower, it would cost me probably ten extra hours per week," explained landscaper Dominick Sanzone.

As Sanzone goes through another day taking care of lawns, there's a debate heating up regarding the use of the loud machines in the City of St. Petersburg.

"City council's going to take up on Thursday whether or not we want to discuss limiting leaf blowers," said Council Chair Karl Nurse.

Gas blowers have come under scrutiny for their noise, the pollutants they send airborne and for the amount of clippings that find their way into local waterways.

"The irresponsible person who's blowing their grass and leaves into the street is actually as big a problem as the noise," Nurse said.

Nurse says there's no plan to ban the machines like Berkeley, California and some cities across the country have done.  Still, residents who support some sort of regulation on gas blowers say enough is enough.

"They're often used to blow parking lots.  We've never figure out why anybody feels the need to blow the dirt around in a parking lot," said Judy Ellis of St. Pete.

Others say local governments have plenty of other issues to deal with.

"I think there's a lot bigger issues than worrying about whether or not someone is blowing off their lawn, or having someone blow off their lawn," said Paul Wells, who was out walking his dogs near where a blower was running.

Like them or not, gas blowers are likely here to stay.  In St. Petersburg, using one may eventually come with some restrictions.   

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