MP concerned with government over-regulation

September 22, 2016

From Queen's Park

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Today, Bruce-Grey-Owen Sound MPP Bill Walker voiced concerns at Queen’s Park from the local farming community over a proposed government regulation that would drastically shrink the number of professional pest advisors in Ontario.

MPP Bill Walker

“The Government’s Regulation 63 threatens to reduce the number of professional pest advisors to 80 from the current 600 and bring the sector to a crawl,” he said in the Legislature this afternoon. “Limiting the farmers’ access to crop advisors at a time when they’re telling us there are not enough advisors in the field, and also limiting the crop advisors’ employment opportunities would be two big burdens of regulations on the agricultural industry as a whole. It’s unconscionable the Government would make such a drastic reduction without consultation or consideration of the impact on the agri-food sector.”

He voiced these concerns during debate on MPP Lisa Thompson’s private member’s bill that aims to reverse the government’s pest advisor regulation. Her bill, titled the Supporting Agricultural Experts in Their Field Act,did pass with unanimous consent of the Legislature. It now moves to committee for review and consultations.

“While I’m pleased we were able to fend off this latest regulatory attack, I still worry that the Liberal government doesn’t understand Ontario’s farming community, which is why it’s being over-legislated,” he said.

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“They need to respect this $14-billion industry and value the fact farmers are business people who positively and significantly impact our economic health and success. Actions speak louder than platitudes and talking points,” MPP Walker said. “Therefore, the government should start treating them as such, and be a supporter, rather than an obstacle.”

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Thursday, September 22, 2016