Of course they've gotta get Mr. Verres's opinion on this. I mean, wouldn't you call him if you were wondering about this sort of thing?
Lavender's mostly there because a) we haven't seen her in a while, and b) the composition for this and upcoming comics was problematic with just Mr. Verres. That said, there's a side effect to her presence, and that's my officially declaring this storyline canon! That might seem nonsensical, but trust me, there's a reason.
You might also be thinking "Um, yeah, I saw the canon-cannon in the commentary for first comic" if you're reading this later, but it wasn't there at first when this storyline was new.
Also, huge spoiler (actually minor) because I want to avoid getting asked this question a lot between the time I'm posting this and the next EGS:NP: It's Susan calling Mr. Verres.