Northern Highways Raised by Campbell
QUEEN’S PARK – Months after Transportation Minister Glen Murray said the government would take action to improve winter road conditions in Northern Ontario, Kenora-Rainy River MPP Sarah Campbell says not enough has been done, and the minister has failed to visit the area as promised.
“Just this month, the minister went on CBC Radio in Thunder Bay and said that the Liberal government would look at bringing some of these services back in-house,” explained Campbell during question period this morning. “He also apologized to the Northwest for our road conditions.”
Murray’s comments came after years of criticism by northern NDP MPPs over worsening winter road conditions in the wake of privatization of road maintenance contracts. This winter, contractors across the Northwest were fined for failing to meet road clearing standards, but conditions have still failed to improve.
Campbell called on Murray to commit to a timeline for the reversal of road maintenance contracts, asking, “When can Northern Ontario expect to see this government follow through on its promise to reverse the privatization of winter road maintenance?
“This Liberal government keeps shifting blame. But the truth is that under this Liberal government, privatization of snow clearing contracts has increased and MTO oversight has decreased,” said Campbell, who called on Murray to come to the Northwest to see the road conditions first hand, as he had promised at one time but has failed to do.
“Is the Minister planning to wait until spring, when the snow is gone, before following through on his commitment to come and see the conditions first-hand?” asked Campbell.