Lawn Care Industry Files Federal Charge Against the McGuinty Government

MONTREAL, Jan. 13 /CNW Telbec/ - According to a December, 2008 Economic Profile by the Ontario Turfgrass Research Foundation (Guelph, Ontario), in 2007 Ontario lawn care companies generated $1.26 billion in income through providing turfgrass maintenance services. The same report lists $577 million spent on equipment, supplies, and wages, as well as the equivalent of 20.8 thousand year-round full-time employees.

Jeffrey Lowes, Director of Government Relations for M-REP Communications, has today filed proceedings for a "private information" - against the Minister of the Environment, John Gerretsen and Senior Staff of the MOE - before a Justice of the Peace at the Kingston Provincial Court.

Filing for a private information, whether laid by either a private citizen such as Mr. Lowes, or by the police, is commonly termed a "charge." The private information is a sworn allegation, made before a Provincial Court Judge or a Justice of the Peace, that the Informant believes an offence has been committed.

Mr. Lowes filed the charge as a result of reviewing the actions of the Province of Ontario in respect to the 2008 Cosmetic Pesticide Ban Act and Ontario Regulations 63/09. These actions alleged to have resulted in serious violations of sections of the Federal Pest Control Products Act (2002, c 28).

The alleged charge filed states: "John Gerretsen, Dale Henry, Geoff Cutten, Wanda Michalowicz, Lorna Poff, Violet vanWassenaer on or about the 22 day of April, 2009 at the City of Kingston in the said region East and elsewhere in the Province of Ontario did fail to exercise their assigned fiduciary responsibilities by not taking reasonable care to ensure that the Ministry of Environment complies with the Pest Control Products Act (2002, c28) and its regulations and did thereby commit an offence contrary to section 70 subsection 2 of the Pest Control Products Act."

As we wait for the process hearing to confirm the charge, we are preparing additional charges under the Federal Pest Control Products Act (2002, c 28), the Federal Competition Act (R.S., 1985, c. C-34), Criminal Code (R.S., 1985, c. C-46). If there are sufficient grounds, additional charges will be filed against individuals and environmental activists who have undermined the scientific approach to pesticide regulations.

Other Provinces will be closely following these developments, since M-REP Communications has been working with the industry across Canada. They are no doubt aware that the Federal Government had warned Ontario about that Province's regulatory methodology.

Jeffrey Lowes has also previously warned Ontario's Minister of the Environment, senior staff, and the organizations that presented the false and misleading information - which resulted in the ban - that the industry would "exercise every possible legal option". The industry has lost over $300 million in the 2009 season as a direct result of the ban.

M-REP Communications is a consulting services firm that provides support through a network of companies in North America and the EU on environmental policy and communications.

SOURCE MREP COMMUNICATIONS

For further information: For further information: Jeffrey Lowes, M-REP Communications Director of Government & Industrial Relations, direct (613) 483-7855, fax (514) 221-4176, jplowes@mrepcommunications.com

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