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Farming Business and Owners fined $55,000 for Nutrient Management Act and Water Resources Act Offences

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Farming Business and Owners fined $55,000 for Nutrient Management Act and Water Resources Act Offences

Napanee - Harvest Hill Farms, Edward Embury and Martha Embury were jointly convicted on three counts for violations relating to failing to comply with a Director`s Order, contrary to the Ontario Water Resources Act (OWRA) and the Nutrient Management Act (NMA), and were fined a total of $45,000 plus victim fine surcharge (VFS) of $11,000.

Martha Embury and Lennox Pork Ltd. were convicted on one count each for violations related to operating a farm without a valid Nutrient Management Strategy, contrary to the Nutrient Management Act (NMA), and were fined a total of $10,000 plus a VFS of $2,500.

Harvest Hill Farms Ltd. is a large farm owned and operated by Edward and Martha Embury, located on Embury Rd. in Newburgh.

Lennox Pork Ltd. is responsible for operating the farm under a valid and approved Nutrient Management Strategy. Martha Embury is the Director of Lennox Pork Ltd.

On October 12, 2012, ministry staff conducted a nutrient management inspection and identified a number of items that were required to be addressed.

The item of concern during the October 2012 inspection was related to manure held in two existing liquid storage structures, and the integrity of those structures.

On July 31, 2013, a ministry order was served to Harvest Hill Farms Ltd., Edward and Martha Embury. The Emburys appealed the order to the Director.

On October 8, 2013, after review by the Director, a Director`s Order was served on Harvest Hill Farms, Mr. and Mrs. Embury.

The Director's Order was related to the requirement that Harvest Hill Farms, Edward and Martha Embury obtain a Professional Engineer's assessment to determine the integrity and suitability of the two manure storage sites, relative to engineering standards and the requirements of the Act.

The matter was referred to the ministry's Investigations and Enforcement Branch and following an investigation, charges were laid. A trial proceeded, which resulted in convictions and fines totaling $55,000 plus $13,500 in total VFS.

On August 16, 2017, Harvest Hill Farms Ltd., Edward and Martha Embury were jointly convicted of three offences, one under the OWRA and two under the NMA. Harvest Hill Farms was fined $30,000 plus VFS of $7,500. Edward Embury was fined $13,000 plus VFS of $3,250. Martha Embury was fined $2,000 plus VFS of $250, with a suspended sentence on one count.

On the same date, Lennox Pork Ltd. was convicted of one offence under the NMA, was fined $5,000 plus VFS of $1,250, and Martha Embury was found guilty of one additional offence under the NMA, and was fined $5,000 plus VFS of $1,250.

All defendants were given six months to pay the fines.

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