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Former Timmins mayor to oversee Ring of Fire development

George Pirie, former mining executive, will lead the charge in mining in new Ford cabinet
George Pirie
Former Timmins Mayor George Pirie at the Big Event Mining Expo June 2019. (Len Gillis photo)

Former Timmins Mayor George Pirie has been named Ontario's new mining minister with a special mandate to develop the Ring of Fire.

Premier Doug Ford revealed his 30-person cabinet on June 24 with only a few changes in portfolios held during Ford's last provincial government.

The decades-old title of Northern Development and Mines was split into two portfolios with Pirie, a mining industry veteran, handed the mining file and incumbent cabinet minister and Kenora MPP Greg Rickford focusing on northern development and Indigenous affairs.

Nipissing MPP Vic Fedeli stays on as minister of economic development, job creation and trade. Demoted is Sault Ste. Marie MPP Ross Romano, who was bumped from his last posting as minister of government and consumer affairs.

Sylvia Jones was appointed deputy premier and health minister. Graydon Smith handles natural resource and forestry.

Stephen Lecce stays in education, Peter Bethlenfalvy remains in finance, and Caroline Mulroney returns as transportation minister.

Monte McNaughton continues as labour minister, Steve Clark still holds municipal affairs, and Todd Smith remains as energy minister.