The Government of Ontario is seeking public comment on a Proposed Growth Plan for Northern Ontario. This notice is provided in accordance with section 7 (1) (c) of the Places to Grow Act, 2005.
The Places to Grow Act, 2005 received Royal Assent on June 13, 2005. Among its purposes, the Places to Grow Act, 2005 enables decisions about growth to be made in ways that sustain a robust economy, build strong communities, and promote a healthy environment and a culture of conservation.
The Places to Grow Act, 2005 provides that the government may designate a geographic area of the province as a growth plan area and develop a growth plan for that area. Ontario Regulation 416/05, as amended, designated Northern Ontario as the second area of the province for which a growth plan will be prepared.
The Proposed Growth Plan brings together the building blocks needed to prepare the region for shifts in the economy by growing Northern opportunities, strengthening its workforce, and enhancing northerners’ quality of life.
The 25-year plan proposes policies, programs and actions, and calls on governments and their northern partners to realize a shared vision. Key actions include:
• Maximizing the economic benefit of increased mineral exploration and production and strengthening the mineral industry cluster;
• Strengthening partnerships among colleges, universities and industry to support research, and to educate and train northerners for careers in growing fields;
• Building a new relationship with Aboriginal people to increase participation in the future economic growth of Northern Ontario and achieve better health status for aboriginal communities;
• Developing complete networks to support stronger communities such as an inter-regional transportation network, enhanced broadband service, and a broader transmission network to increase capacity for renewable energy development;
• Creating regional economic zones to help communities plan collaboratively for their economic, labour market, infrastructure, land-use, cultural and population needs;
• Encouraging development and use of green technologies and demonstrating leadership in green building, and water and energy conservation.