CAPT and Stakeholder Committee Update

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The following update has just been received from CAPT with regards to The Algoma Central Railway Passenger Service Stakeholder Committee and a letter from a CAPT supporter to Bryan Hayes, MP.

The Algoma Central Railway Passenger Service stakeholder Committee, chaired by Joe Fratesi, met on Thursday, March 6. The wording of the Stakeholders Questionnaire was discussed. It will be on the new website www.algomapassengerrail.com by Monday. We encourage all of you to fill out the questionnaire and submit it ASAP. All information will be kept completely confidential and will only be reported to the government as overall totals. There will be no individual names sent with the information. We encourage everyone to check out that website on a regular basis and put a link to it on any other website that you can. Leaders of the working group have sent a letter to Minister Raitt and have been having ongoing discussions with MPs Bryan Hayes and Carol Hughes centred around requests for a meeting with the Minister.

If you haven’t sent letters yet, please do so and send them to the following making sure to copy info@captrains.ca when possible:

Minister Lisa Raitt: lisa.raitt@parl.gc.ca
MP Bryan Hayes: bryan.hayes@parl.gc.ca
MP Carol Hughes carol.hughes@parl.gc.ca

To sign the online petition please visit: saultonline.com

Letter from CAPT supporter to Bryan Hayes, MP

Dear Sir:

Thank you for your letter ,and we appreciate your effort to save ACR passenger service between S.S.Marie and Hearst.

As a reason for cutting the subsidy you mention the following:

“to fund passenger railway services to communities that have year-round access to the national transportation system through other means, such as highways, as all official stops along the ACR route have year round road access. “

Oba Lake (Mile 207 – 215) is one of many places which has no road access of any kind. There are 3 commercial fishing resorts and 8 private cottages totally dependent on the railroad. Every summer hundreds of visitors, mostly fishermen use the train from Hawk Junction to arrive on Oba Lake for a vacation. Historically these stops are marked as “flag stops” but they are the busiest stops of the northern part of ACR. Stops Mile 210, Mile 212 and Mile 215 are even marked on the official road map of Ontario published by Ministry of Tourism!! Whoever supplied this information to the federal government was clearly wrong and misleading. I am mentioning Oba Lake but there are many more similar situations along the 500 km route. To make such a far reaching decision based on wrong facts is incomprehensible.

Don’t you find it paradoxical that millions of dollars are spent annually on advertising in the USA to attract visitors to “Ontario beautiful”, and thousands of people who have been coming to this area year after year will not be able to make the trip any more?? And go somewhere else or just stay home? These visitors do not need any persuasion they love it here. ACR is a unique attraction-one which should not be just “cancelled”.

Thank you again for your support.

Sincerely,

Michael Spazier
Woods Cabins
Oba Lake

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