The OSWCA Congratulates Bi-Partisan Effort To Reduce Red Tape and Make Ontario a Safer Place To Live, Work and Play

The OSWCA applauds PC MPP Bob Bailey (Sarnia-Lambton) and NDP MPP Paul Miller (Hamilton East-Stoney Creek) for working together to co-sponsor an important Private Members' Bill that seeks a mandatory One Call system for all underground infrastructure location services in Ontario.

TORONTO, Nov. 24, 2011 /CNW/ - The Ontario Sewer and Watermain Construction Association (OSWCA) offers its enthusiastic support and congratulations to PC MPP Bob Bailey (Sarnia-Lambton) and NDP MPP Paul Miller (Hamilton East-Stoney Creek) for demonstrating a clear spirit of cooperation by jointly introducing a Private Members' Bill, The Ontario One Call Act -- an act that reduces red tape, saving businesses time and money; and increases worker safety and public safety.

This important legislation is welcome news for our industry members, who want Ontarians to reap the benefit of a system that reduces the regulatory burden for business, offers taxpayers the benefit of cost savings from accident prevention, and will improve public and worker safety in Ontario.

"There is an urgent need for a mandatory One Call system that extends across the province to ensure the safety of our workers and the safety of the general public," said Don Sloat, OSWCA President. "It is encouraging to see that right out of the gate Ontario political parties are working together in a spirit of collaboration.  The OSWCA urges the Government of Ontario to support this important piece of legislation.  If passed, this One Call initiative can be a perfect illustration of the positive impact that cooperation and collaboration between political parties can offer to taxpayers in the name of safety and reduced red tape."

The Ontario One Call Act would make it mandatory for all utility asset owners and excavators to use a single one call system to locate all underground utility lines before digging. If passed, the bill would establish Ontario One Call Ltd., as a not-for-profit call centre that would be the single point of contact for all underground utility location services in the province. Public and worker safety are at serious risk when utility lines such as buried pipelines or hydro lines are struck or damaged because homeowners, building contractors and other excavators do not obtain the precise location of lines before they dig.

"Ontario's current, voluntary approach does not work on jobsites." said Joe Accardi, OSWCA Executive Director. "Safety cannot be a voluntary exercise and a mandatory approach is necessary. In fact, mandatory One Call systems are in place in all 50 states across the USA, reducing the risk of serious injury or fatality to workers and the general public."

In the coming days, the OSWCA will be communicating directly with all Ontario MPPs and urging them to continue working together in a spirit of collaboration and cooperation to ensure that The Ontario One Call Act is passed during this legislative session.

About the OSWCA: The OSWCA is the voice of over 800 members across Ontario including contractors, manufacturers and distributors who perform over $1 billion a year in capital projects. To learn more about the OSWCA visit www.oswca.org

SOURCE Ontario Sewer and Watermain Construction Association

For further information:

Susan McGovern - Assistant Executive Director - susan.mcgovern@oswca.org or by calling 905-629-7766 or 416-206-6645.

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Ontario Sewer and Watermain Construction Association

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