NDP MPP for Niagara Falls Wayne Gates stood up in the Ontario legislature this December 7th to tell Doug Ford to stop attacking the environment
Our kids’, our grandkids’ futures are at stake. … Stop the attack now. We must stand up for our greenbelt, our environment, our climate, our kids and our grandkids.” – Niagara Falls MPP Wayne Gates
A News Release from the Constituency Office of Niagara Falls MPP Wayne Gates
Posted December 7th, 2020 on Niagara At Large
QUEEN’S PARK – NDP MPP for Niagara Falls Wayne Gates stood up in the Ontario legislature Monday (December 7th) to tell Doug Ford to stop attacking the environment by gutting the province’s conservation authorities.
This weekend David Crombie, chair of the Greenbelt Council, and six of its members, resigned in protest against the Ford government’s pushing through changes to the Conservation Authorities Act in the budget omnibus bill.
“For weeks, my colleagues and myself have been highlighting the shameful decision the of this government to sneak in damaging anti-environmental legislation underneath the smokescreen of the budget.
These recent resignations further prove that this government’s priorities when it comes to the environment are all wrong. They want to tear up 80 years of environmental protection and help their developer friends pave over the greenbelt.
In Niagara, we saw the absolute worst example of a conservation authority under the previous board—a board, quite frankly, that seemed very determined to act as an arm of development corporations and not a steward of the environment. When these actions were exposed by engaged citizens, they tried to sue them, including a veteran.
The changes made to the conservation authority allow the Niagara authority to get back on the right path. This decision has the potential to undo all that good work.
Our kids’, our grandkids’ futures are at stake. I hope these resignations are the needed encouragement for this government to finally understand how dangerous their plans are. There will be serious consequences. Stop this attack now. We must stand up for our greenbelt, our environment, our climate, our kids and our grandkids.”
A Brief Footnote from Niagara At Large reporter and publisher Doug Draper –
Late this November, Niagara Falls NDP MPP Wayne Gates pressed Ontario Premier Doug Ford’s disastrous Environment Minister, Jeff Yurek, for a response as to why, among other things, the Ford government is moving to fire all citizens from their seats on Conservation Authority boards.
Yurek, who has been a serial B.S. master since his first day as one of the worst Environment Ministers Ontario has ever had, began his response with some fluff about how much him and his wife like visiting Niagara-on-the-Lake, a town that is part of Gates’ Niagara Falls riding.
Then he went on to claim that his governments were removing citizen voices from Conservation Authority boards and replacing them with elected municipal councillors is that the citizens are apparently not “accountable” enough to the public.
What this pathetic excuse for an Environment Minister fails to note in his response to the Niagara Falls MPP is that the citizens sitting on the boards for the Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority and other Conservation Authorities across the province were appointed by elected members of area municipal councils that provide a great deal more funding to Conservation Authorites than the provincial government.
To follow Yurek’s logic to its conclusion though, if it is true that un-elected citizens, even though they are appointed by elected govwernment bodies, cannot be counted on to be publicly accountable, then what in hell was the Ford government doing when it appointed April Jeffs, a failed Ford Conservative candidate in the 2018 provincial elections, to the board of the Niagara Parks Commission?
Why did this same Ford government appoint Bart Maves, a former Conservative government MPP and former Niagara Falls regional councillor, to the Niagara Falls Bridge Commission?
The only common qualifications these two have for an appointment is that they are Conservative Party hacks.
I can go on and on, by the way, listing examples of individuals who currently do not hold an elected office, yet received appointments to boards and commissions, and have that same one thing in common – they are friendly , one way or another, with the government in power.
So please, and at long last Mr. Yurek, stop insulting our intelligence.
Sorry about the little rant but those points, I think, are important to note before you click on the following link to watch Niagara Falls MPP Wayne Gates raise concerns about the Ford government’s plans to deconstruct our Conservation Authorities this past November.
Doug Draper, Niagara At Large
To watch, click on the following link and make sure you turn on the “speaker” icon on the bottom, right hand corner of the video to turn the sound on – https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=856858541785655 .
To read a report Niagara At Large posted earlier this December 7th on mass resignations at the Ontario Greenbelt Council, in protest of the Ford Government’s plans to gut the Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority and 35 other Conservation Authorities across the province, click on – https://niagaraatlarge.com/2020/12/07/more-resignations-at-ontario-greenbelt-council-are-alarm-bells-official-opposition-party-critic/ .
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