MASSE DEMANDS TRANSPORT MINISTER FUND TRUCK FERRY PROJECT

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 19, 2008

MASSE DEMANDS TRANSPORT MINISTER FUND TRUCK FERRY PROJECT

Windsor, On- Today, Brian Masse, Member of Parliament (Windsor West) and NDP Industry, Automotive, and Border Critic, wrote a letter to the Minister of Transport, John Baird, demanding he intervene and fulfill the federal government’s commitment to fund 50 percent of Windsor Detroit Truck Ferry Improvement project.
See letter below. Masse is available for comment
For more information please contact: Mohummed Peer 519-982-8816

Dear Minister Baird,

I am writing to you today to about Windsor Detroit Truck Ferry improvement project. This needed infrastructure enhancement has already received all governmental approvals and permits. Furthermore, the commitment of both the Province of Ontario and Transport Canada to funding this project has been in place for some time on a shared cost basis. This necessary border improvement is by definition “shovel-ready.”

Unfortunately, as of today there is uncertainty about Transport Canada’s allocation of the required financial allocation to initiate construction, which would create 30 jobs. According to media reports and statements from Transport Canada officials the federal allotment is going to be $2.9 million, which falls short of the 50 percent federal commitment made at the outset of this project. The Province of Ontario has reiterated its commitment to fulfill its share which totals $4 million. This situation needs to be rectified immediately. Due to construction schedules as well as weather considerations, commencement of work on this project must begin imminently if completion is to be obtained without any disruption of service.

The Windsor Detroit Truck Ferry is the only approved border crossing in the Windsor-Detroit gateway for trucks transporting hazardous waste since neither the Ambassador bridge nor the Windsor-Detroit tunnel are authorized for such goods. Any disruption of service will create backlogs and bottlenecks in the largest trade corridor in the country. If this needed infrastructure upgrade is neglected, the publicly safety and security repercussions for your government would be immeasurable.

With the monies set aside in Budget 2009 and in Border Infrastructure funds already established, the federal capacity to fulfill its obligation for a 50 percent cost share is easily obtainable. I urge you to use your Ministerial authority to intervene and correct this situation.

I look forward to your response.

Sincerely,

Brian Masse, M. P.
Windsor West

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