Since I was first elected in 2004, I’ve had the privilege of representing the riding of Haldimand-Norfolk as your Member of Parliament. As your voice in Parliament, my first priority has always been to make one of the best places to live in Canada, even better.
When I meet with constituents from across Haldimand-Norfolk, I hear time and again that jobs and the economy are their top priorities. This is why our Conservative Government has taken action to grow our economy by supporting innovation, expanding trade, and maintaining infrastructure in our communities.
On May 14th of this year, my office was made aware that with the help of Grand Erie Business Centre, Natra Corporation had applied for a government loan to begin operations at what was formerly the Bick’s plant in Dunnville. I take my responsibility to ensure the prosperity of my constituents and my riding’s economy very seriously, so after getting details from Wayne Knox of the Grand Erie Business Centre, I immediately contacted Minister Lebel (Transport, Infrastructure and Communities) and Minister Goodyear (FedDev Ontario) in person and by letter to express my support for this initiative. In my letter to them I outlined the many potential economic benefits of bringing Natra’s business to Haldimand County, and strongly urged them to review the application carefully. I am checking in regularly to track its status and have requested that their offices update me as quickly as possible when the process is completed.
This is yet another example of work that I am proud to do on behalf of my riding. A number of investments have come to Haldimand County in recent years (far too many to list in this letter), where the federal government has stepped up to make a real difference for the people who live here. I am very proud to have helped support projects like the new arenas in Cayuga and Dunnville, where millions of dollars have been injected into those communities. Needed upgrades to the water and wastewater treatment facilities in Dunnville, Hagersville and Cayuga have also taken place because the Conservative Government was a contributor, among others. I have also been very pleased to help Haldimand area seniors, employers and the disabled receive federal funds to help them remain active participants in our community. Once again this summer, young people have had the opportunity to obtain work experience through the Canada Summer Jobs program and we`ve tried to make life better for others with funding to Haldimand Community Services. This is not to mention how we`ve helped make Haldimand even more beautiful, with upgrades to the Caledonia Fairgrounds, Rock Point Park and the Hagersville Alzheimer`s park.
I am proud to be a strong advocate for organizations and businesses in our riding who submit applications to secure federal funds for our communities. But it is critical that we all play by the rules. As a member of our Conservative Government, I am committed to doing whatever I can to help my constituents, but I will also always ensure that the process we follow is fair and ethical for all concerned.
As I referenced in my letter of support, Natra’s expression of interest in purchasing and developing Bick’s pickle production facility is significant. This project has the potential to not only boost the company to higher levels of production in North America – but also benefit the economic climate in Dunnville, and the Southwestern Ontario region as a whole.
As your MP, I am hopeful that such a positive economic opportunity can become a reality for our area. And I also know that by following the process and allowing federal officials to review the information with careful due diligence, it will have the best chance for success.