Mr. Speaker, I have tabled many petitions with respect to the ACR passenger service. I am pleased to table 18 of those petitions today, with hundreds of names. Most of the petitioners are from the riding of Sault Ste. Marie, and rightly so. They would like to have their voices heard here in the House of Commons.
These petitions are about the fact that people were not broadly consulted as stakeholders in the decision by the government to remove funding to the ACR passenger service. Although the government has reinstated some funding, only for another year, the petitioners remain concerned that the current government is not committed to tourism in northern Ontario, nor is it committed to the health and safety and the accessibility of these areas.
Again, I am pleased to table these petitions on behalf of people who are mostly from the Sault Ste. Marie riding and my riding, and from Ottawa and Toronto, and from a variety of people who have signed these petitions.
It is my duty to inform hon. members that, pursuant to Standing Order 93(3), no amendment may be proposed to a private member's motion or to a motion for second reading of a private member's bill unless the sponsor of the item indicates his or her consent.
Therefore, I ask the hon. member for Sault Ste. Marie if he consents to this amendment being moved.
Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to table a couple of petitions today. Two of them are with respect to funding for the Algoma Central Railway. Most of the petitioners are from the riding of Sault Ste. Marie, who want to ensure that their voices are heard here in the House of Commons. They are from Sault Ste. Marie, Bruce Mines, Searchmont, and Prince Township, and some are from Hawk Junction, Wawa, and Burk's Falls, in my riding, and some are from Toronto as well. Some of the petitioners are actually from the United States. This shows how critical this is. It is with respect to funding for the Algoma Central Railway.
The government has actually put in some additional funding for at least one more year while a working group works on this. However, the petitioners remain concerned with respect to the lack of consultation by the government and about the impact this will have on their economy and their businesses.
Certainly, members would know that issues of relevance are in fact compelled by the Standing Orders. The earlier intervention that I made in respect to the hon. member for Timmins—James Bay's comment, indeed, I did not feel was relevant at the time. I still allowed the hon. member for Sault Ste. Marie to respond.
In the same vein, with the hon. member for Durham, we are getting into an area that is really questioning the veracity and/or legitimacy of certain advocacy organizations. Admittedly, it is an area that concerns the relationship between the topic at hand and the various organizations that represent them. I would just remind all hon. members to guard that type of commentary in relevance to the question in front of the House today.
I do not know if the hon. member for Durham was finished. Perhaps he could just finish up quickly and then we will go to the member for West Nova.
Order. The member will take his seat.
At the same time, I am certainly quite willing to let the hon. member for Sault Ste. Marie field the question if he is so inclined.
The hon. member for Sault Ste. Marie.
Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to rise in the House again to table petitions with respect the Algoma Central Railway passenger service. Most of these petitioners are from the riding of Sault Ste. Marie. They want to have their voices heard here. They are from Richards Landing, Sault Ste. Marie, Goulais River, Desbarats, Prince Township, Echo Bay, as well as from Kapuskasing, Burlington, Barrie, Ottawa, and Winchester.
The petitioners are concerned with the fact that the government removed the subsidy to this rail line. Although it has recently reinstated the subsidy for one year, the petitioners remain concerned that the government is making decisions without stakeholder consultations. They are concerned about their businesses and the economy, and they want the government to act on this issue.
Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to rise on behalf of petitioners from Ottawa; Arnprior; Rockland; Namur, Quebec; Corner Brook, Newfoundland; Richmond; Sault Ste. Marie; Echo Bay; Huron Bay; Hilton Beach; and Wikwemikong. The petition is with respect to passenger rail in northern Ontario, specifically the Algoma Central Railway passenger rail.
The petitioners are concerned that the government has not seen fit to consult with the stakeholders. This rail is the sole access for many businesses, homes, and communities and it could be lost, which would damage their economy, health, safety, business aspects, and accessibility to the area. The petitioners ask the government to reinstate its funding.
Although the government has actually provided some funding, it is only for another year. Therefore, the petitioners remain concerned with respect to the viability of this passenger rail service. We should be moving forward on passenger rail.
Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to rise in the House to raise attention on behalf of residents of Sault Ste. Marie, Aweres, Prince Township, Goulais River, and Hilton Beach, which are in the Conservative riding of Sault Ste. Marie. They are concerned about the subsidy removal for the Algoma Central Railway passenger rail service and the fact that there was no broad consultation; that it is impacting businesses, homes, and communities along the route; and that it is affecting their local economy, especially for small businesses. They are asking the government to reinstate funding for the Algoma passenger rail service. I have to admit that the government did put a bit of funding back, but only for one year, and these residents remain concerned about that.
The electoral district of Sault Ste. Marie (Ontario) has a population of 89,028 with 69,272 registered voters and 191 polling divisions.
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