It’s time to brush the dust from my shoes gathered at all of the festivals, pow wows events, celebrations and meetings that I attended over the summer and head back to the Legislature.  After all the conversations and meetings I had with many constituents this summer, clearly there is a lot of work to be done back in Queen’s Park. My colleagues and I feel primed and pumped, ready to bring the concerns we gathered over the summer to the government.

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If you and your family are looking for something to do this summer, you need look no further than our own Algoma-Manitoulin backyard. There is always something to see, some new adventure to enjoy and lots of festivals and activities happening. I have enjoyed attending local farmers’ markets, art shows, music festivals, pow wows and much more. As well, I had the honour of greeting the Honourable Elizabeth Dowdeswell, Lieutenant Governor of Ontario, when she visited Elliot Lake and Manitoulin Island last week. It is wonderful to have the Queen’s representative visit and to help showcase to the nation the spectacular uniqueness of our home.

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The Ontario Legislature may be recessed for the summer, but there is still so much going on, both here in Algoma-Manitoulin and across the province. I have enjoyed many opportunities to speak with so many constituents in the last few weeks. Algoma-Manitoulin has no shortage of events for locals and visitors alike to attend and enjoy. Some events are annual, and we look forward to attending each summer. Others are special events, gatherings for special announcements, grand openings, festivals, concerts…. And the list goes on. In the coming weeks I will continue to travel across the riding and look forward to meeting with many friends, old and new.

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Winter, summer, spring and fall, one of the most common topics for calls and letters my office receives is in regard to transportation concerns. This isn’t surprising given that so many of us have to travel often for business, recreation, medical and other reasons. People contact me to express concerns about winter maintenance, road maintenance, structural safety and the lack of viable transportation options. I frequently hear from people who are frustrated with the limited access and options available for travellers who do not have their own vehicle to travel between their community and other larger centres.

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This week, MPPs found quite heart wrenching as families with children who have been identified as being in the Autistic spectrum once again came to Queen’s Park hoping the Liberals would hear their cries for help.  The government is intent on sticking to its plan to remove children over the age of 5 from the autism IBI therapy waitlist, thus totally ignoring the government’s own expert panel. 

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The Ontario Ministry of Government and Consumer Services has announced the closure of the Service Ontario office in Blind River.  Service Ontario is a Government initiative that was created to give Ontarians an easy, cost-effective way to access government services. The Blind River Service Ontario office is a necessary resource for the community and surrounding area.

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