March 2013 Bulletin

Welcome to CELA's March 2013 Bulletin

LIEN's 2013 annual conference

CELA’s Executive Director Theresa McClenaghan will speak on climate change and renewable energy in Ontario at the Low Income Energy Network’s upcoming conference. This year’s conference theme will be “Navigating Ontario’s New Low-Income Energy Landscape.”

WHAT: A range of agencies, advocates, organizations, and legal clinics will gather to share information on current low-income energy issues. WHO: Special keynote speech from the Chair of the Ontario Energy Board, Ms. Rosemarie Leclair.

WHEN: Wednesday, March 27, from 9 am to 4 pm WHERE: Harbourfront Community Centre, Dance Studio, 627 Queens Quay West (corner Bathurst St.), Toronto. Map: http://goo.gl/maps/03U3v  

COST: Although there is no registration fee, space is limited. Lunch will be provided. Register online at the LIEN website: www.lowincomeenergy.ca.

Improved Ontario Local Food Act Reintroduced

CELA welcomes the reintroduction of the government’s Local Food Bill. The original bill was introduced on October 4, 2012, but died on the order paper as a result of prorogation. The new bill includes several enhancements from the last iteration of the bill, such as requiring government procurement under $25,000 to be sourced locally, and requiring the government to report every three years on progress made on local food.

“The Government’s reintroduction of a strengthened local food bill is commendable and an opportunity that CELA believes is critically important to the health of Ontarians, and for Ontario’s economic and environmental health” says Theresa McClenaghan, Counsel and Executive Director at CELA. Read our press release.

 Model Local Food Bill

CELA's Burgandy Dunn, Kyra Bell-Pasht, and Joe Castrilli have worked with the healthy food and farming organization Sustain Ontario on its law reform efforts to strengthen and expand the government's Bill 130, Promoting Local Food Act. CELA’s counsel helped Sustain Ontario produce statement of purposes, drafting notes, research papers, and webinars.

In 2012, Bill 130 died on the order paper as a result of prorogation. However, with the generous support of the Metcalf Foundation and advice from various experts and stakeholders, CELA took the opportunity to further influence government through the development of model legislative language.

At the end of February 2013, CELA released its Model Bill and distributed it to relevant minister's critics and policymakers. Feedback from government and the public has been positive, and CELA eagerly awaits the government's reintroduction of a local food Bill promised by Premier Wynne. We hope other aspects of our Model Bill will be included as the new Bill moves forward through the legislative process.