Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne talks affordable housing, LRT in Hamilton

News Apr 26, 2016 by Kevin Werner Stoney Creek News

Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne remained cautiously supportive of Hamilton Mayor Fred Eisenberger’s proposal to spend about $50 million over 10 years on building more affordable housing units and poverty reduction.

But she didn’t talk about specifics of the plan after meeting the mayor April 26 while touring the McMaster Innovation Park.

“It’s a good sign that municipalities are pushing ideas and they want us to come to the table,” Wynne told reporters. “This was the first I had heard of this particular plan.”

Wynne has proposed $178 million for affordable housing over three years, which includes building 1,500 units, in this year’s budget, a figure that Hamilton councillors dismissed as not enough.

Eisenberger has introduced a motion to spend $20 million on affordable housing, and another $3 million over 10 years on poverty reduction. Politicians will debate the issue at their May 4 government issues committee meeting.

“I’m very interested in how we can work with municipalities to make new investments in affordable housing,” Wynne told reporters.

She is also looking to the federal government for help since the Liberals have announced a national housing strategy that could help all three levels of government make Eisenberger’s plan a reality.

Wynne defended her Liberals’ poverty reduction strategy impact, arguing it has made a difference in municipalities such as Hamilton.

While speaking to an atrium filled with politicians, and McMaster University officials, Wynne rejected any naysayers about Hamilton’s $1-billion LRT project being a failure, which the province provided the capital money to build. Despite criticism of the LRT, Hamiltonians will eventually come to enjoy the system once it’s finished in 2024, she said.

“There will be a certain amount of discomfort as we go through this,” said Wynne. “We will be doing everything in our power to give people information. What people really need is to know what happens, they need to know step by step what is happening, how long it will last, exactly how long the dust settles on their front steps.

“It will be wonderful when it’s done,” Wynne said.

Wynne made Hamilton her first stop on a tour of the area talking about her government’s jobs and innovation programs.

During a half-hour speech, she railed against the former federal Conservative government for basing its economic strategy on austerity and “the naïve assumption” that the commodity markets will continue to grow.

“All that did was mask the huge structural challenges that Canada needs to overcome,” said Wynne. “Ontario has, meanwhile, taken a drastically different approach. We invested in our core strengths, people’s talents, skills, diversified industries.”

She praised the small start-up businesses at the Innovation Park, such as Chipsetter, that is competing with a Chinese company in the robotics market.

“You are helping to build a more resilient and globally competitive Ontario economy,” she said. “Oil exports alone will not drive Canada’s economy over the long-term. Ontario will.”

Wynne was also scheduled to meet with business leaders in Milton, and members of the Black Businesses and Professional Association later in the evening.

Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne talks affordable housing, LRT in Hamilton

News Apr 26, 2016 by Kevin Werner Stoney Creek News

Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne remained cautiously supportive of Hamilton Mayor Fred Eisenberger’s proposal to spend about $50 million over 10 years on building more affordable housing units and poverty reduction.

But she didn’t talk about specifics of the plan after meeting the mayor April 26 while touring the McMaster Innovation Park.

“It’s a good sign that municipalities are pushing ideas and they want us to come to the table,” Wynne told reporters. “This was the first I had heard of this particular plan.”

Wynne has proposed $178 million for affordable housing over three years, which includes building 1,500 units, in this year’s budget, a figure that Hamilton councillors dismissed as not enough.

Eisenberger has introduced a motion to spend $20 million on affordable housing, and another $3 million over 10 years on poverty reduction. Politicians will debate the issue at their May 4 government issues committee meeting.

“I’m very interested in how we can work with municipalities to make new investments in affordable housing,” Wynne told reporters.

She is also looking to the federal government for help since the Liberals have announced a national housing strategy that could help all three levels of government make Eisenberger’s plan a reality.

Wynne defended her Liberals’ poverty reduction strategy impact, arguing it has made a difference in municipalities such as Hamilton.

While speaking to an atrium filled with politicians, and McMaster University officials, Wynne rejected any naysayers about Hamilton’s $1-billion LRT project being a failure, which the province provided the capital money to build. Despite criticism of the LRT, Hamiltonians will eventually come to enjoy the system once it’s finished in 2024, she said.

“There will be a certain amount of discomfort as we go through this,” said Wynne. “We will be doing everything in our power to give people information. What people really need is to know what happens, they need to know step by step what is happening, how long it will last, exactly how long the dust settles on their front steps.

“It will be wonderful when it’s done,” Wynne said.

Wynne made Hamilton her first stop on a tour of the area talking about her government’s jobs and innovation programs.

During a half-hour speech, she railed against the former federal Conservative government for basing its economic strategy on austerity and “the naïve assumption” that the commodity markets will continue to grow.

“All that did was mask the huge structural challenges that Canada needs to overcome,” said Wynne. “Ontario has, meanwhile, taken a drastically different approach. We invested in our core strengths, people’s talents, skills, diversified industries.”

She praised the small start-up businesses at the Innovation Park, such as Chipsetter, that is competing with a Chinese company in the robotics market.

“You are helping to build a more resilient and globally competitive Ontario economy,” she said. “Oil exports alone will not drive Canada’s economy over the long-term. Ontario will.”

Wynne was also scheduled to meet with business leaders in Milton, and members of the Black Businesses and Professional Association later in the evening.

Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne talks affordable housing, LRT in Hamilton

News Apr 26, 2016 by Kevin Werner Stoney Creek News

Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne remained cautiously supportive of Hamilton Mayor Fred Eisenberger’s proposal to spend about $50 million over 10 years on building more affordable housing units and poverty reduction.

But she didn’t talk about specifics of the plan after meeting the mayor April 26 while touring the McMaster Innovation Park.

“It’s a good sign that municipalities are pushing ideas and they want us to come to the table,” Wynne told reporters. “This was the first I had heard of this particular plan.”

Wynne has proposed $178 million for affordable housing over three years, which includes building 1,500 units, in this year’s budget, a figure that Hamilton councillors dismissed as not enough.

Eisenberger has introduced a motion to spend $20 million on affordable housing, and another $3 million over 10 years on poverty reduction. Politicians will debate the issue at their May 4 government issues committee meeting.

“I’m very interested in how we can work with municipalities to make new investments in affordable housing,” Wynne told reporters.

She is also looking to the federal government for help since the Liberals have announced a national housing strategy that could help all three levels of government make Eisenberger’s plan a reality.

Wynne defended her Liberals’ poverty reduction strategy impact, arguing it has made a difference in municipalities such as Hamilton.

While speaking to an atrium filled with politicians, and McMaster University officials, Wynne rejected any naysayers about Hamilton’s $1-billion LRT project being a failure, which the province provided the capital money to build. Despite criticism of the LRT, Hamiltonians will eventually come to enjoy the system once it’s finished in 2024, she said.

“There will be a certain amount of discomfort as we go through this,” said Wynne. “We will be doing everything in our power to give people information. What people really need is to know what happens, they need to know step by step what is happening, how long it will last, exactly how long the dust settles on their front steps.

“It will be wonderful when it’s done,” Wynne said.

Wynne made Hamilton her first stop on a tour of the area talking about her government’s jobs and innovation programs.

During a half-hour speech, she railed against the former federal Conservative government for basing its economic strategy on austerity and “the naïve assumption” that the commodity markets will continue to grow.

“All that did was mask the huge structural challenges that Canada needs to overcome,” said Wynne. “Ontario has, meanwhile, taken a drastically different approach. We invested in our core strengths, people’s talents, skills, diversified industries.”

She praised the small start-up businesses at the Innovation Park, such as Chipsetter, that is competing with a Chinese company in the robotics market.

“You are helping to build a more resilient and globally competitive Ontario economy,” she said. “Oil exports alone will not drive Canada’s economy over the long-term. Ontario will.”

Wynne was also scheduled to meet with business leaders in Milton, and members of the Black Businesses and Professional Association later in the evening.