Monday, November 14, 2005

Ottawa shoots down ban

Ottawa is the capital city of Canada. Wednesday, Nov. 9, lawmakers there defeated a bylaw aimed at banning the "cosmetic use" of pesticides on properties there. The vote was 12-9. This was the second time in less than a month that they voted on the measure. Several weeks ago they deadlocked on the issue in spite of a lot of backroom wrangling and political arm twisting. Efforts to come up with a compromise among the lawmakers created lots of discussion but no consensus. Although the idea of bringing the issue to the public in the form of a referendum was discussed, that too was narrowly defeated by the councilors. The pesticide debate in Ottawa has been so exhausting that even the lawn care companies there — the target of activist organizations — told us they were agreeable to a compromise measure. Looks like they have some time to catch their breaths, at least until the anti-pesticide drum beat begins. — Ron Hall

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