QUEEN’S PARK – Ontario PC Leader Tim Hudak and PC Critic for Northern Development, Mines and Forestry, MPP Randy Hillier, today demanded that the McGuinty Government finally listen to northern families about the devastating impact Bill 191 will have on jobs and investment in Northern Ontario.
“Bill 191 has been rammed through the Legislature with no consultation or accountability for those whose lives and livelihoods it will change forever. If Dalton McGuinty passes this damaging Bill without substantial changes, a Tim Hudak led Ontario PC Government will repeal it,” stated Ontario PC Leader Tim Hudak.
“Our government is listening and we are acting on what we’ve heard through proposed amendments to the Bill and additional funding for First Nation communities. As part of our government’s Open Ontario plan, land use planning is a priority and Bill 191 presents an extraordinary vision for the Far North,” contends Linda Jeffrey, Minister of Natural Resources.
Today, the Ontario PC Caucus put forward a motion to demand that the McGuinty Government hold listen to northerners on the damage this bad Bill will do to the northern economy.
The PCs say “In June, Dalton McGuinty reneged on legislatively required northern consultations for Bill 191, The Far North Act, which is opposed by northern First Nations, municipalities and industries alike. Bill 191 is scheduled to come up for final reading on Thursday”.
Bill 191 will choke off 50 per cent of northern Ontario from future economic development at a time when northern Ontario families need new jobs and investment. Hudak renewed his commitment that a future PC Government will repeal the Bill 191 should the McGuinty Government ram through the legislation as written.
“The McGuinty Liberals are ignoring the voice of northerners because they know northern families, business owners and First Nations would tell them how this damaging bill is going to kill jobs and pave the roads of Northern Ontario with generational poverty,” charges Randy Hillier, PC Critic for Northern Development, Mines and Forestry.
- In May 2010, upon completion of just fours hours of debate, the McGuinty Liberals passed a motion that set a specific period for consultation in the north (the second week of June) and a date for final passage of the bill (the third week of September).
- The McGuinty government failed to give northern communities adequate notice of the hearings. As a consequence, northern families, businesses and First Nations threatened to boycott the hearings. The Liberals’ response was to cancel the public hearings completely.