THUNDER BAY – The City of Thunder Bay’s key priorities were addressed during the 2020 Rural Ontario Municipal Association (ROMA) Conference in Toronto this week says Red River Ward Councillor Brian McKinnon.
A delegation led by McKinnon, the Chair of the Intergovernmental Affairs Committee, along with Mayor Bill Mauro, and City Manager Norm Gale brought forward community issues to lobby for action and/or funding, and promote Thunder Bay’s important issues relevant to the community.
“The ROMA Conference allows us to strengthen our city’s relationship with the Province by providing opportunities to connect with those who can help drive progress for Thunder Bay and indeed the north,” said Mayor Bill Mauro. “Our delegation presented on a number of key priorities with a goal to forge ahead in a positive direction.”
The Thunder Bay delegation secured meetings with Provincial Ministers, and/or designates, including:
- Doug Downey, Attorney General, Ministry of the Solicitor General
- Sylvia Jones, Ministry of the Solicitor General
- Parliamentary Assistant, Parm Gill, Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing
- Vic Fedeli, Minister of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade
- Michael Tibollo, Associate Minister of Health
- Parliamentary Assistant Stan Cho, Ministry of Finance
“Overall, our efforts at connecting with Provincial Ministers to discuss our priorities were a success,” said Councillor McKinnon, Chair of Intergovernmental Affairs Committee. “We had time to speak to key issues facing our city and region, including lobbying for crucial work needed for the Bombardier Plant.”
Key priorities the Thunder Bay delegation lobbied for included:
- Collection of Provincial Offences Act (POA) fines
- Police Services Funding
- Next Gen 911
- Evacuation Procedures
- Shelter House funding
- Detox beds
- Crisis Centre for Mental Health and Addictions
- Ontario Municipal Partnership Fund
The ROMA 2020 conference program brought forward a wide range of issues that are critically important to rural municipalities, and brought together municipal leaders from all over Ontario together with Provincial politicians to discuss and advance the priorities of rural communities.
The Thunder Bay delegation was also a part of the NOMA Multi Minister Session where they spoke to many issues.
Overall, the conference saw keynote presenters such as the Honourable Doug Ford, Premier of Ontario, along with the Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing; Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs; Minister of Health, and leaders of the NDP, Liberal and Green Party of Ontario.
NetNewsLedger has asked the Mayor and the Chair of the Intergovernmental Affairs committee if the issue of NOHFC Funding for the Indoor Turf facility was raised with Ontario Government officials at the conference.
Mayor Bill Mauro responds, “I met the minister and flagged the project for her. We have met with her on the project previously. She is well aware of it, no decisions have been made yet”.