You are on page 1of 2

West Block, 326 Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0A6 Tel: 613-992-3061 Fax: 613-995-3515


409 George St. Thunder Bay, Ontario Tel: 807-623-6000 Fax: 807-623-6001 Toll-Free: 1-800-667-6186

Thunder Bay

113A Main Street E. P.O. Box 40 Atikokan, Ontario P0T 1C0 Tel: 807-597-2000 Fax: 807-597-2227


Member of Parliament for Thunder Bay – Rainy River

John Rafferty

140 4th St. W. Fort Frances, Ontario P9A 3B8 Tel: 807-274-9313 Fax: 807-274-3597

Fort Frances

April 28, 2009. Minister John Baird Minister of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities Tower C - 330 Sparks St. Ottawa, Ontario, Canada K1A 0N5 Dear Minister Baird, I am writing to express my support for the recently announced purchase of Bombardier streetcars by the City of Toronto, and to request the federal government provide one third of the public money required to implement this important deal. I am also writing to express my concerns about your recent public comments on the matter. As you know, the city of Thunder Bay has been particularly hard hit by both the forestry and manufacturing crises. As a result, we have seen the loss of thousands of jobs and many workers still face an uncertain future. As such, the recently announced deal between the City of Toronto and Bombardier Inc. is an extremely important and positive development for the people of Thunder Bay that will create and protect hundreds of jobs in our region over the next decade. Indeed, this deal is a win-win-win arrangement for the people of Canada. While creating jobs in Thunder Bay, this deal with also create jobs in and upgrade the infrastructure of the City of Toronto, and help Montreal based Bombardier expand its international advantage in the transportation manufacturing sector. Minister, your government has repeatedly stated that; it wanted to protect and create jobs in Canada, that it is ready to invest large sums of money for infrastructure and economic stimulus, and wants to help Canadian companies survive the current economic crisis. As the federal Transportation Minister, you are in a unique position to pursue all of the above objectives by ensuring that the federal government provides a full one-third of the public money required to fund this project.

I would also like to take this opportunity Minister to express my disappointment in your recent public comments on this deal. I read today that you said this deal may not qualify for federal stimulus money because; “We [Conservatives] want to create jobs now. That's a 10-year contract." I must point out, that under the negotiated deal the first streetcar must be built by Bombardier and delivered to the City of Toronto within two years, which means that production must in fact begin as soon as possible. Also, while the work would be undertaken immediately, the new jobs created by this project would in fact last for the duration of the contract – ten years, and even longer if options are exercised by the buyer. I hope you will agree that this project does in fact create jobs and economic activity right away and that the ability to keep people working beyond the current economic crisis should not disqualify this or any other infrastructure project from receiving federal stimulus money this year. In closing Minister, I would like to thank you for giving this matter your most urgent attention. I also urge you to revisit your public comments on this matter to date and to not disqualify this project from receiving federal stimulus funds simply because it will create jobs that may outlast the current economic crisis. I cannot overstate the importance of this project to the local economy of Thunder Bay and request, and strongly urge you to approve, federal funding that amounts to one-third of the public money required for this project before the contract deadline of June 27, 2009. Sincerely,

John Rafferty, Member of Parliament (Thunder Bay – Rainy River) Delivered by Hand Cc: Hon. Jack Layton, Leader of the New Democratic Party of Canada. Bruce Hyer, Member of Parliament (Thunder Bay – Superior North) Premier Dalton McGuinty, Province of Ontario Andrea Horwath, Leader of the Ontario New Democratic Party Mayor Lynn Peterson, City of Thunder Bay Mayor David Miller, City of Toronto Councillor Adam Giambrone, Chair of the Toronto Transit Commission Pierre Beaudoin, President and CEO, Bombardier President Ken Lewenza, Canadian Autoworkers Union.