Sault Ste. Marie— Ontario Liberal leader Kathleen Wynne has confirmed her participation in the Northern Leaders’ Debate on Monday, May 26th. The Northwestern Ontario Municipal Association (NOMA) will host the debate in Thunder Bay.
“Our government has made unprecedented investments in Sault Ste. Marie that have resulted in improvements to our local education system, greater access to health care close to home and new jobs in our community,” said Liberal candidate David Orazietti. “Our party is the only one with a plan to move Northern Ontario forward through initiatives that build on the gains we have made over the last eleven years, including a new Jobs and Prosperity plan and designated infrastructure funding to support the four-laning of Highway 17.”
Wynne was first to call for a debate specifically focused on Northern issues and put forward a direct challenge to the PC and NDP leaders while attending NOMA’s annual conference in Fort Frances on April 24th, 2014.
In the 2014 Liberal budget, Kathleen Wynne’s Liberals committed to:
· A new $2.5 billion Jobs and Prosperity Fund that will strengthen Ontario’s ability to attract business investments and support quality, well-paying jobs
· Creating a new $29 billion infrastructure fund that specifically dedicates $14 billion for improvements to Northern and rural transportation infrastructure, including 4-laning routes such as Highway 17
· Investing over $295 million over two years for the Ontario Youth Jobs Strategy to help young people gain the skills and experience to obtain meaningful employment
· Continuing to support economic development in Northern municipalities through $100 million in annual funding for the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation (NOHFC). Locally, the NOHFC has helped to strengthen Sault Ste. Marie’s economy with $87 million to support 728 projects
· A $1 billion investment to build vital transportation infrastructure for the Ring of Fire
Andrea Horwath’s NDP put Ontario’s economic recovery at risk when they chose not to support a budget that would have made important investments in Northern Ontario.
The Hudak PC proposal to slash 100,000 jobs would put Ontario’s economy at risk and plunge the province back into recession. Fewer people at work means less money invested back into the economy, leading to thousands of layoffs.