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THUNDER BAY, ON ----  September 30, 2011  ---  The Thunder Bay Chamber of Commerce sent a survey in mid Ontario VotesSeptember to all candidates for the Provincial Election. We asked their views on a range of topics important to the business community. “As the „Voice of Business? we want to assist voters in their choice of those running to represent us at Queen?s Park,” stated Harold Wilson, President.

When we posted our Municipal Election survey results last October, our members found it very valuable. The results of the Provincial Election survey are now available on the Chamber?s website, and can be searched by candidate, question or Riding

The questions were:

        1. The Government has increased Ontario?s minimum wage by 50% since 2003 to the current $10.25 an hour. What is your Party?s position on increasing the Minimum Wage over the next 4 years?

        2. What tangible steps would you and your Party take to address the cost and supply of energy for industrial, commercial and retail businesses in Northwestern Ontario over the next 4 years?

        3. Outline what specific changes you would make to best utilize Northwestern Ontario developed energy for industrial investment attraction to our region.

        4. The Chamber has consistently requested that the Government permanently allocate a minimum of 26 million cubic metres/year of fibre for utilization of existing mills and new entrants, even if it is not being used, and further that the Government make a commitment to conduct socio-economic impact assessments on any or all legislation, regulation and policies that could reduce the provincial fibre supply or reduce access to the landbase/natural resources. Would your Party commit to these measures, and if not, what would you specifically propose to invite new sustainable investment in the forestry sector?

        5. Given the need to comprehensively engage First nations in resource development initiatives, especially the Ring of Fire, what would your Party do differently to bring forward guidelines regarding negotiations and development to reduce the uncertainty for business to help them invest?

        6. Building infrastructure in the North will unlock resources. A critical issue is that the infrastructure required primarily runs north-south, while the contiguous protected zones such as for caribou run east-west. How will you expedite the approvals required to attract the private sector development?

        7. Development of Crown Land to attract investment in the North has been a promise unsuccessfully kept by all three main political parties over the past 20 years. What would your Party accomplishment with respect to Crown Land development within a four-year mandate?

        8. What does your party specifically plan to do to encourage an increase in skilled trades training and employment?

Searched by candidate, question or Riding using the following link:

The Thunder Bay Chamber represents over 1050 businesses in Thunder Bay.

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