KENORA – POLITICS 2.0 – Ontario NDP Leader Andrea Horwath joined the Northwestern Ontario Municipalities Association (NOMA) to share her vision for change for the better on Thursday. The NDP leader will be in Thunder Bay on Friday to continue sharing her message that will become the New Democrats campaign theme.
“The hardworking people of Northern Ontario built this province into the great place it is today, and you deserve to see your priorities, and your ambitions, represented at all levels of government,” said Horwath speaking in Kenora. “I am offering Ontarians a plan that offers real change for the better for municipalities, families, and businesses across the North.”
Horwath emphasized significant investments an NDP government would make in the North, including improving access to health care services, expanding natural gas and high-speed internet infrastructure, and moving forward on the Ring of Fire.
“Ontario’s New Democrats have deep roots in the North, and we have a real plan to invest here. We will create good jobs across the resource development sector – the kind of jobs young people can raise a family on – including igniting the Ring of Fire with a $1 billion investment.”
The NDP leader says, “By contrast, Doug Ford has vowed more than $6 billion in cuts across the board, and promised to privatize as much as possible – which would strain overloaded Northern health care even further, and threaten community services and programs that families depend on most. Doug Ford has also endorsed the Wynne Liberals’ hydro scheme, which will see Northern hydro bills skyrocket even higher after the next election”.
Horwath’s plan to make life more affordable for Northern families includes reducing hydro bills by 30 percent and ending unfair northern and rural delivery charges. And, Horwath will end price differences that see Northerners gouged at the pump.
“I’m letting Ontarians across the province know that they don’t have to settle for bad or worse,” said Horwath. “An NDP government will partner with municipalities to invest in the services and infrastructure Northern families depend on, and we’ll undo the damage done by decades of cuts and privatization at the hands of Liberal and Conservative governments. That’s change for the better for the North and all Ontarians.”
Horwath’s commitments to Northern Ontario include:
• Lighting the Ring of Fire with a $1 billion investment
• Restoring the Ontario Municipal Partnership Fund to $550 million, and continuing to grow it
• Investing $100 million in natural gas expansion to rural Ontario, and use Ontario-grown bio-fuels
• Spending $1 billion to bring broadband service to rural and northern communities
• Bringing winter road maintenance back into to public hands
• A moratorium on school closures
• A Northern Rail Strategy, which will include getting Ontario Northlander’s passenger service rolling again
• End regional prices differences for gas, so Northerners won’t be gouged at the pump anymore