Thunder Bay-Atikokan MPP Bill Mauro is chairing the government's new Northern cabinet committee.
An Ontario government news release said the committee will address "the complex needs of Northern Ontario," will focus on job creation, transportation infrastructure, and improving access to the Far North Ring of Fire mineral deposits. The committee will oversee the implementation of the Growth Plan for Northern Ontario.
The announcement was made at a special cabinet meeting in Sault Ste. Marie, March 1, the home riding of Natural Resources Minister David Orazietti.
“I am pleased to welcome the first cabinet meeting held in Northern Ontario since 1995. The premier has made is clear that the North is a top priority for this government and bringing all my colleagues to Sault Ste. Marie is proof of that continued commitment,' said Orazietti.
The release said Premier Kathleen Wynne and her cabinet intend to improve access to health care and education in the region, support the business community, and help young people in the region find stable employment.
“My team and I have been listening to the unique concerns of the people in this region," said Wynne in a statement. "The Northern cabinet committee will help us put the ideas and discussions we’ve had into action as we work to improve transportation, create jobs, and ensure a brighter future for every person in this province.”
“I’m happy to chair the new Northern Cabinet Committee to bring a greater focus on priorities that will help the Northern economy grow, create jobs and help all Northerners succeed," said Mauro.
"This committee provides us with an opportunity to strengthen and expand our initiatives--harnessing the incredible talent and unprecedented opportunity in our province’s North."