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Mayor’s Statement on Premier’s Moving Ontario Forward infrastructure announcement

April 15, 2014 -

Yesterday, Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne announced a new $29 billion transit and transportation infrastructure fund for Ontario. This announcement in municipal infrastructure is welcome news for Kingston and, if passed, a significant step in addressing our municipal infrastructure needs.

With this announcement, the Province will create two funds - $15 billion for transit in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area and $14 billion for transportation in the rest of Ontario, in communities like Kingston.

The Province indicated this fund is geared towards priority infrastructure projects like public transit, roads, bridges, and highways. In Kingston, we have no shortage of priority projects, like the extension of John Counter Boulevard, the Third Crossing and the Norman Rogers Airport expansion to name a few.

Kingston, like many other communities in Ontario, is facing tough choices, competing priorities, aging infrastructure and a lack of dedicated investment from the other levels of government.

However, Council has taken pro-active steps to address these issues by investing 1% of our tax dollars in infrastructure. We recognize that we can't just keep going "cap in hand" to the other levels of government every time a need is identified – we must continue with our plan to invest in our future.

I, like many Mayors, am cautiously optimistic about the implementation and delivery of the province's plan, given the potential for a spring provincial election and the rhetoric from all parties in the Ontario legislature.

I can appreciate the challenges associated with a minority government, but I am hopeful all three parties find some common ground to implement this plan. The vision and plan are there to continue investing in and enhancing our communities. Let's work together to achieve this vision.

For more information contact:
Mayor Mark Gerretsen
613-546-4291 Ext. 1405