Toronto, Ont., May 14, 2003 – Municipal governments have been calling on the province to develop a province-wide approach for this important public health issue.

"The announcement means that we can proceed in a more informed and effective partnership to deal with this public health concern," said AMO President Ken Boshcoff. 

Municipal governments and their local public health units were finding themselves in the middle of debates on the quality of science and evidence of impacts of larviciding and fogging.  "We are pleased the government has listened," said Boshcoff. "Given the speed at which WNv has crossed jurisdictions, it was time for the Province to take a lead particularly since the Province has the scientific experts.  Leaving 446 municipal governments and 37 local public health units to struggle with this did not make sense to us."

The added financial support is also welcomed, however, the magnitude and on-going nature of this kind of public health concern points out the vulnerability of financing social and health programs by the property tax base, which is generally considered to be most regressive of all taxes.  

The Association of Municipalities of Ontario (AMO) is a non-profit organization with member municipalities representing 98 per cent of Ontario’s population.  AMO supports and enhances strong and effective municipal government in Ontario and promotes the value of municipal government as a vital and essential component of Ontario and Canada’s political system.

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