Our local political leaders from all 3 levels of government delivered an upbeat message to a Kingston business audience this morning.
The Chamber of Commerce heard updates on a wide range of topics — from hydro bills, to prison cells.
Darryn Davis has more.
Jobs and economic growth were on the menu — as one by one – the city’s top political leaders took their turn addressing business leaders at this chamber breakfast.
“Ontario has outstripped Canada, the U.S. and G7 countries in terms of our economic forecast. ”
The politicians also addressed local issues like the next steps for redeveloping Kingston Penitentiary.
The long-awaited report from a public visioning exercise is expected to come out in a few weeks.
“Clearly the federal government will be the ones overseeing the disposal of Kingston penitentiary.
It is their property, but on the city side the Portsmouth Olympic Harbour we’ll certainly be getting to work to redevelop that part.”
On the federal side, gerretsen says he’ll be pushing his government make sure the vision becomes reality.
“So that it doesn’t end up in similar situation where other federal properties have, for example the prison for women that unfortunately for the last 10 or so years has sat empty. ”
“And Gerretsen says the federal government’s plan to set up a pay office here in Kingston to address issues with the phoenix pay system is continuing to move forward. ”
“Tthat will specifically deal with issues faced by CFB and Corrections Canada employees. It’s going to be located at 294 King street the old customs house by city hall. ”
No date has been set for the provincial budget but MPP Sophie Kiwala did confirm the government will be addressing a major sore point for residents — rising hydro rates.
“It’s looking like budget time there will be further announcements to be made as far as hydro goes?
That’s correct yup.”
She also talked about the pending expansion of the Wolfe Island ferry service… and the next phase of widening the 401.
Mayor Paterson says Kingston is on strong economic ground with international businesses Feihe and Frulact setting up in the city… crating about 300 jobs combined.
The mayor also promised upcoming announcements involving partnerships with all of the city’s post secondary institutions.
“We’re looking forward to talking in more detail about some of the partnerships we’re going to be able to have to advance important city priorities, encouraging entrepreneurship, developing our workforce and creating more innovation here in Kingston. ”
Darryn Davis CKWS news Kingston.