When it comes to updates on passenger rail service for northeastern Ontario, there has been so little to report publicly but much going on in the background.
Just before Christmas, Metrolinx and Ontario Northland delivered their yearlong creation of a business plan for return of passenger rail service which includes all the necessary items for decision making (scheduling, equipment, service levels, etc.) it to the Ministry of Transportation.
Sometime in the next few months, the government plans to transfer the Ontario Northland Transportation Commission to the Ministry of Transportation from the Ministry of Energy, Northern Development and Mines. As Corina Moore, President and CEO of Ontario Northland stated “Aligning Ontario Northland with the Ministry responsible for transportation planning, infrastructure, and integrated transportation service delivery across the Province is positive for Ontario Northland and the North. This model ensures more effective collaboration between the two Provincial transportation agencies and will continue to create opportunities to improve seamless transportation services for our rail and bus passengers;” said Moore. “We are excited to implement expanded services to ensure improved transportation options across Northern Ontario.”
So, this is where we are at:
THE GOVERNMENT OF ONTARIO MADE A PROMISE TO RETURN PASSENGER TRAIN SERVICE TO NORTHEASTERN ONTARIO
THE AGENCIES OF THE GOVERNMENT HAVE PRODUCED THE REQUESTED PLAN TO IMPLEMENT THE PASSENGER TRAIN SERVICE
THE SPRING 2020 GOVERNMENT BUDGET MUST INCLUDE THE FUNDING TO GET THE PLAN ROLLING AND RETURN PASSENGER TRAIN SERVICE FOR NORTHEASTERN ONTARIO.
What can you do to help?
Tell the government to put the money in the budget!
Without the money, the train won’t run. Then another year will pass and then an election year.
Have your say!
You probably have never responded to a government request to participate in offering suggestions for the budget development but here is your opportunity – TAKE IT!! – complete the survey on this link and make a difference.
Add your support for the passenger train service NOW – CLICK HERE – https://www.ontario.ca/page/2020-budget-consultations
Your fellow train passengers thank you for participating and helping make train service a reality.
Lucille Frith and Howie Wilcox, Co-Chairs Northeastern Ontario Rail Network