Wynne Government establishes Ministerial Advisory Committee on ONTCThursday, March 21, 2013 by: Kate Adams
The new Ontario government has created an advisory committee of northern representatives to provide input on the Ontario Northland Transportation Commission (ONTC) divestment process.
Committee members include:
Representative from the Métis Nation of Ontario, Chair France Picotte
Representative from the Union of Ontario Indians
Tom Laughren, Mayor of Timmins
Al McDonald, Mayor of North Bay
Al Spacek, Mayor of Kapuskasing and President of the Federation of Northern Ontario
Nina Wallace, Mayor of Englehart
Geoff Cowell, Xstrata
Marc LeBlanc, Tembec
Gord Smith, Manitoulin Transport
Ted Hargreaves, ONTC Chair, will serve in an Ex Officio capacity as a resource for the committee.
This diverse membership will provide advice to the Minister of Northern Development and Mines on the timing and approach for divestment, including ways to optimize economic opportunities in partnership with new private sector investors.
“I made a commitment to set up this Ministerial Advisory Committee to ensure the voices of northerners and all those impacted by the divestment of ONTC were heard. The advisory committee has also been established to meet the standard our government has set out: to see
that divestment recognizes the economic development value of the ONTC, and that the decisions made reflect the need to put in place a northern transportation strategy that
recognizes growth and prosperity.”
─ Michael Gravelle, Minister of Northern Development and Mines
“I am very pleased that the city of North Bay will host the first meeting of the newly formed Minister’s Advisory Committee on the ONTC. I was honoured that Minister Gravelle requested me to be a part of his new advisory committee and I look forward to sharing my views and
working alongside all the members at our first meeting on March 25th.”
─ Al McDonald, Mayor of City of North Bay
The committee will hold its inaugural meeting in North Bay on March 25, 2013.
The divestment of the provincially owned ONTC was announced on March 23, 2012.
Since 2003, the government has invested more than $430 million to help make ONTC viable
and self sustaining.
Based on current estimates, supporting ONTC today would require approximately $100
million per year in government funding, which is not sustainable in the current fiscal
The establishment of the advisory committee is part of a larger conversation the new Ontario
government will have with community leaders about northern Ontario and its unique needs.