Croplife Canada v. City of Toronto

(Ontario) (Civil) (By Leave)




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Constitutional law - Division of powers - Paramountcy doctrine - Validity - Municipal by-law - Whether Toronto by-law is constitutionally inoperative under the doctrine of federal paramountcy because it frustrates a federal legislative purpose - Whether Toronto by-law frustrates the purpose of the Pest Control Products Act, R.S.C. 1985, c. P-9 by depriving Canadians of the benefits that the federal regime is designed to confer.

The Applicant is a trade association representing manufacturers, distributors and developers of pesticides for use in, inter alia, agriculture and in urban settings in Canada. The city had unsuccessfully applied to the Ministry for approval to enact a by-law dealing with pesticides without success as the Ministry did not want to proceed on a patchwork basis, hoping to develop a uniform scheme throughout the province. The Ministry took no alternate steps, however, and the city followed up by passing By-law No. 456-2003 pursuant to s. 130 of the Municipal Act, 2001, S.O. 2001, c.25, claiming its authority to do so under the general power to regulate the health, welfare, morals and safety. The By-law purported to regulate the use of pesticides within the city boundaries. Croplife Canada sought to have the By-law quashed on the grounds that it was ultra vires the city. Croplife's application was dismissed, as was its appeal from that decision

Lower Court Rulings

December 8, 2003
Ontario Superior Court of Justice

Applicant's application for an Order quashing the Respondent's by-law dismissed
May 13, 2005
Court of Appeal for Ontario

Appeal dismissed