Sunday, April 29, 2007

Can do, Don't tell

Another captured board has done it again. A couple of years back the Structural Pest Commission went after a high school boy that started rat proofing homes. They sent him a cease and desist order and they got slapped down for it. Then they went after landscapers spraying roundup and the legislature slapped them down again. Now they're going after a retired cop.

As retirees go, Rich Hanley seems like a decent enough guy. He's a former cop who came to town a few years ago. He obeys the law. He pays his taxes. In 2004, he started up a little business, repelling roof rats.

Specifically, he covers vents with steel mesh so the little fellas can't come calling.

Once, we would have applauded such enterprise. Now, we issue cease-and-desist orders.

Yep, it's true. My favorite state bureaucrats over at the Structural Pest Control Commission have decided that Hanley has violated the law...

"The problem is his advertising," says Lisa Gervase, executive director of the agency...

The pest-control cops launched a seven-week probe, concluding that Hanley can do the work. He just can't tell people why he's doing the work. Thus, his sales pitch - "Keep birds and rodents from invading your home" - has to go.

Gervase said the state would have no problem if Hanley says he's covering vents to keep leaves out. "But if he's advertising that he can keep pests from invading your home, that's pest control, and you need a license for pest control."

Apparently he can do the work, he just can't say he's doing the work.

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