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Erin town council to consider Nestlé fund at April 18 meeting

Mayor Allan Alls

The Town of Erin in southern Ontario will be considering Nestlé’s offer to establish a so-called “community benefit fund” at an upcoming council meeting.

CBC reports, “Nestlé Waters Canada proposed the idea of the fund during a Feb. 1 council meeting. …The fund would give the town 50 cents for every 1,000 litres of water Nestlé takes from the [Hillsburgh] well they own in town. Nestlé has said the town would get at least $25,000 annually.”

The article notes, “Mayor Allan Alls said the matter is coming up at the April 18 council meeting and he would be willing to comment on the fund following that meeting.”

Nestlé says it pumped 82 million litres of water from the well in 2016, even though it has a permit to extract 1.1 million litres of water a day.

According to a SouthwesternOntario.ca news report this past February, the company would have paid $41,135 to the community last year under this scheme.

Nestlé Waters Canada is a subsidiary of Nestle S.A, the Swiss based transnational which had sales of about $116 billion in 2015.

The CBC article highlights, “Mike Nagy of the Wellington Water Watchers said the fund is a ‘quasi-profit situation’ and no municipality should profit from the sale of water. …’We just fundamentally oppose seeing water going out of the community and then, hey, here’s a little bit of cash for your trouble.’ …Nagy said they are concerned the town council will approve the fund with little public input.”

The Town of Erin’s website notes, “Very important issues arise in the Town of Erin from time to time. Public comment is always welcome. If you feel strongly enough about an issue, to write a letter to the Town or call about it, please sign your name to the letter or leave your name and number on telephone messages.”

Mayor Allan Alls can be reached at:

Office: 519-855-4407 Ext 232

Toll Free: 1-877-818-2888

Cell: 416-200-9153

email: allan.alls@erin.ca

Nestlé’s current permit to extract 1.1 million litres of water per day from Hillsburgh expires on August 31, 2017.

In addition, Nestlé’s permit to pump 3.6 million litres of water a day from Aberfoyle expired on July 31, 2016, but the company is allowed to continue to extract that water while the provincial government considers their application.

The Council of Canadians believes that these permits should not be renewed.

For more on this, please see canadians.org/nestle