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Liberals Vote ‘No’ to Business Risk Management Program for Farmers

Part 2 of Video

(June 3, 2010) Liberal MPPs defeated a resolution in the Ontario Legislature today that would have pushed the McGuinty government into implementing the business risk management program that Ontario farmers have been asking for.  The resolution was tabled by Simcoe-Grey MPP Jim Wilson in reply to farmers in his constituency and Ontario’s 57,000 farm families who have been seeking government assistance.

“Ontario farmers across many commodity groups are suffering during this economic downturn,” Wilson said in his remarks in the Legislature.  “While governments have bailed out autos and banks, there is no infrastructure program or any other form of additional relief for Ontario farmers.”

In a recent letter to MPPs, the Ontario Agricultural Sustainability Coalition (OASC) said, “The resolution coming before the Legislature is about food security and the ability to feed ourselves while sustaining a healthy economy and environment.  The importance of a home grown food supply cannot be overstated!”  They also wrote, “At risk are not just Ontario’s farmers and the 80,000 jobs they provide, but also the many jobs across the province in processing and further processing of Ontario’s food products.  This number is estimated to exceed 600,000 jobs.”

If accepted by the Liberals, Wilson’s resolution would have ensured that Ontario farmers had a business risk management program in place for the 2009 production year, which is currently being marketed.  Instead, Liberal MPPs used their majority to defeat the motion 23 to 16.

Wilson called it “disgraceful” that neither the Minister of Agriculture nor the Parliamentary Assistant even bothered to vote or join the debate.  “The resolution was neither hostile nor contentious.  It was a simple, yet important effort to encourage the government to validate its support for Ontario farmers and today they let them down,” said Wilson.

 BACKGROUNDER


The following is the recorded vote.

Those in favour:

Arnott, Ted
Bisson, Gilles
Clark, Steve
DiNovo, Cheri
Elliott, Christine
Hardeman, Ernie    Kormos, Peter
Kular, Kuldip
Marchese, Rosario
McMeekin, Ted
Miller, Paul
O'Toole, John    Prue, Michael
Ruprecht, Tony
Sergio, Mario
Wilson, Jim


Those opposed:


Albanese, Laura
Arthurs, Wayne
Balkissoon, Bas
Berardinetti, Lorenzo
Cansfield, Donna H.
Delaney, Bob
Dhillon, Vic
Dickson, Joe  

Flynn, Kevin Daniel
Jaczek, Helena
Lalonde, Jean-Marc
Mangat, Amrit
McNeely, Phil
Moridi, Reza
Murray, Glen R.
Naqvi, Yasir   

Pendergast, Leeanna
Phillips, Gerry
Qaadri, Shafiq
Sandals, Liz
Smith, Monique
Wilkinson, John
Wynne, Kathleen O.
Zimmer, David


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