Earlier today I joined mayors and chairs for the “Building Up Ontario” meeting with Premier Kathleen Wynne in Toronto. We heard presentations from Anne Golden from Metrolinx. Former mayor Hazel McCallion was also in attendance to share her wealth of experience with participants. Hazel never stops working; she continues to amaze!
This was an opportunity to bring together local and provincial government leaders to discuss issues of importance facing municipalities, including investing in public transit and breaking gridlock. As Canada’s sixth largest city, I have always said that when senior levels of government work to address Mississauga’s priorities, all of Ontario and Canada are better positioned to grow and thrive.
For these reasons, after being sworn in as mayor, I wasted no time to meet with MPs; MPPs; senior provincial cabinet ministers including Finance Minister Sousa, Transportation Minister Del Duca; and Premier Wynne back in early February, to discuss Mississauga’s priorities, including our vision for a new Light Rail Transit (LRT) plan.
Last January I participated in an Ontario pre-budget consultation at the Living Arts Centre hosted by Minister Charles Sousa and Ministry of Finance officials. I reminded provincial representatives how our LRT will improve public transit, create jobs and generate economic development. It will elevate the quality of life for residents, and perhaps most importantly, it will unleash the potential of our Downtown core. The Ontario budget is expected in April and I am optimistic, with all the work we have done, that Mississauga’s funding priorities will be addressed.