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Budget good for city's space industry says Aspin

Nipissing-Timiskaming MP Jay Aspin says he's pleased with how the federal budget, announced yesterday afternoon, aligns with his plan for a space industry in North Bay.

Nipissing-Timiskaming MP Jay Aspin says he's pleased with how the federal budget, announced yesterday afternoon, aligns with his plan for a space industry in North Bay.

"That's what I lobbied the hardest on," says Aspin who is the Vice-Chair of the aerospace caucus and Chair of the Space Caucus.

"We're supporting space commercialization which is $30 million over four years to support the satellite communications sector which is what we're all about. We're going to be launching satellites out of North Bay.

"It's about getting these huge space dollars down to the companies and the communities, such as North Bay where there are benefits. That was one of the most pleasing aspects of this budget is the amount of money earmarked for aerospace and space development. It's right aligned with what we are doing in North Bay."

Greg Rickford, MP-Kenora, and Canada’s Minister of Natural Resources and Minister for the Federal Economic Development says the government's "Initiative for Northern Ontario Supporting Mining and Mineral Exploration: Economic Action Plan 2015" proposes to allocate $23 million over five years to stimulate the technological breakthroughs needed to develop metals such as chromite and rare earth elements located in resource rich areas like the Ring of Fire and make them less expensive to produce.

As well, the government proposes to invest $86 million over two years to support the forestry sector by extending the Forest Innovation Program and the Expanding Market Opportunities Program.

Rota disappointed.

But Nipissing - Timiskaming Liberal candidate Anthony Rota says he is very disappointed that the Conservatives cut all money going into promoting Canada abroad.

"Northern Ontario has seen a dwindling of our American visitors over the years due to the strong Canadian dollar.  Now, with a strong American dollar, we should be advertising to the Americans to bring them to Canada, not advertising to Canadians to tell them about the Action Plan!

"It seems that the ring of fire is no longer a priority to Jay Aspin and this government. Northern Ontario needs a plan that will prepare the groundwork that attracts private industry to chromite mining.

"There is no plan for job growth or economic stimulus; infrastructure money that is promised to stimulate the economy comes in two to 10 years from now, with no guarantee.  This tells me that this is a government that is flying on a wing and a prayer, hoping for a Hail Mary pass.

"Overall, this budget lacks vision and a plan," he said.

Budget helps wealthiest says NDP

And NDP candidate Kat Jodouin says "Hard working middle class families need real steps to make life better and create good jobs and opportunities. Instead, the Conservatives have stubbornly pushed measures like income splitting for the wealthiest Canadians - measures that overwhelmingly help those who need it least.

"New Democrats proposed practical steps that will help fix the damage done by Stephen Harper and create good jobs and opportunities for families - new supports for small businesses and manufacturing, a $15 federal minimum wage, and make child care affordable and available to all Canadians"

Chamber weighs in

"With the deficit eliminated, the federal budget is a good starting point but it still has a long way to go to ensure competitiveness in the future," says Chamber of Commerce President Jake Lacourse.

He was pleased to see a balanced budget posting a modest surplus of $1.4B; however he stated he was “concerned about the fact that they are using contingency funds to do it.”

Lacourse continued by stating “one of the big highlights was that the small business tax rate will be reduced from 11% to 9% by 2019 (0.5% reduction each year starting Jan 1, 2016), resulting in $2.7 billion in tax savings through 2020; this will be a positive affect for over 90% of Canadian businesses.”

Jeff Turl

About the Author: Jeff Turl

Jeff is a veteran of the news biz. He's spent a lengthy career in TV, radio, print and online, covering both news and sports. He enjoys free time riding motorcycles and spoiling grandchildren.
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