What our next Premier said
Congratulations to Kathleen Wynne on her selection as Premier-designate of Ontario. We look forward to her leadership and collaboration with other party leaders and levels of government in driving investment in our regional transportation system. She committed to take steps on this issue during the lead-up to the 2013 Ontario Liberal leadership convention.
Before the convention, we asked each of the candidates where they stood in terms of supporting greater investment with the following ‘Yes’ or ‘No’ question:
“Will you champion the prosperity of the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area by expressing your support for greater investment in our regional transportation network, and committing your government to take steps to facilitate the introduction of new, sustainable revenue tools?”
Kathleen Wynne had this to say:
“I will champion the prosperity of the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area by supporting increased investment in our regional transportation network. Yes, I’m committed to taking steps to consider the facilitation and introduction of new, sustainable revenue tools.”
We look forward to building on the growing public and political momentum on this issue to realize our vision of an efficient, accessible, affordable, and fully-connected regional transportation system that drives the economic, social, and environmental prosperity of the GTHA.
Here is what the other candidates had to say:
“My answer is yes. I commit that as Premier, I will create a 20-year transportation plan that will make Metrolinx’s Big Move strategy a reality – ensuring a modern and reliable transportation system for future growth. […] That regional transportation authority must also have new revenue streams at its disposal to bring investment in transportation infrastructure outside of the annual political budgeting process.”
“The answer is yes [...] Last week in a speech to the Board of Trade of Metropolitan Toronto, I said that very soon after taking office the new Premier is going to have to make decisions on how are we going to resolve the gridlock. We fix that in a variety of ways I think, but we do it also by determining that we are going to raise money directly for that purpose. I am in favour of a dedicated revenue source.”
[…] I believe we need to integrate and harmonize transit in the GTHA and that the next logical step in this process is to move authority for the TTC from the City of Toronto to Metrolinx [...] Financial details of this transfer of authority, as well as funding arrangements going forward, will be subject to some necessary negotiation; however this will not stop us from moving forward with what we know to be the necessary next step in Toronto’s and the GTHA’s public transit transformation.”
Gridlock is costing our economy $6 billion annually and is a barrier to job growth and economic expansion. As part of my platform I have introduced an innovative new revenue tool, the Ontario Infrastructure Saving Bond, which will provide a dedicated funding source for priority infrastructure projects such as the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area regional transportation network.”