THUNDER BAY – The President of the Northwestern Ontario Municipal Association (NOMA) expressed optimism with the release of the first provincial budget released from the Ford government.
Wendy Landry, President of NOMA was pleased to see some language in this budget that speaks to developing a strategy for the forestry sector. “Forestry plays a significant role for the economy in Northwestern Ontario. It’s encouraging that the government recognizes this and is looking to create a strategy to foster innovation while reducing red tape. This paves the way to identify new methods to promote Made-in-Ontario wood products.”
Landry noted that the commitment to create 15,000 new long-term care beds over the next five years with upgrades to 15,000 older long-term care beds is a good investment for communities. “Hopefully the commitment to enhancing long-term care beds will be allocated throughout the province ensuring that we can accommodate our ageing seniors in their home community. Often we are seeing our loved ones having to move to larger centers to receive the care they need. We have been advocating for some time to invest in long-term care so that our seniors stay in the community they have called home for many years.”
While the budget clearly focuses on several municipal priorities, like urban transit, rural broadband, and reducing municipal costs, the government does acknowledge that these areas need attention. “Municipalities deliver most of the services that the public uses every day. It’s encouraging to see that the province is committed to aligning changes and costs in a sustainable manner. We will continue to have dialogue with the province especially around partnership funding and service delivery. ” added Landry.