Ontario’s Northern Task Force to ensure transportation plans reflect needs

by Today's Trucking

The Ontario government has created the Northern Task Force to focus on transportation needs and opportunities in the region. The locally-based force, made up of community-based leaders, will examine ways to make it easier for people and goods to travel, while boosting economic growth in the North.

A truck traverses the Trans-Canada Highway in northern Ontario at the east end of Lake Superior. (Photo: iStock)

“Our government understands that Northern Ontario has unique transportation needs that can make travelling between local communities more challenging for people, and we continue to take action to alleviate these challenges and make travel safer,” said Caroline Mulroney, minister of transportation. “The Northern Task Force will ensure transportation plans reflect the diverse voices within the community and inform our government of the most important local needs.”

The task force members are:

Danny Whalen (co-chairman): president, Federation of Northern Ontario Municipalities and councillor, City of Temiskaming Shores; Wendy Landry (co-chairwoman): president, Northwestern Ontario Municipal Association and mayor, Municipality of Shuniah; Brian Bigger: mayor of Greater Sudbury; Daniel Reynard: mayor of Kenora; Dave Plourde: mayor of Kapuskasing; Doug Lawrance: mayor of Sioux Lookout; Johanne Baril: mayor of the Municipality of Val Rita-Harty and president of NorthEastern Ontario Municipal Association; Grand Chief Ogichidaa Francis Kavanaugh: Grand Council Treaty #3; Chief Melvin Hardy: Northern Superior Regional Deputy Grand Council chief, Anishinabek Nation; Kevin Eshkawkogan: CEO of Indigenous Tourism Ontario; Alan Spacek: chairman of the Ontario Northland Transportation Commission; Charles Cirtwill: president and CEO of the Northern Policy Institute; and Ron Bumstead: owner, Bumstead Trucking.

Additional members may be added later. Northern Ontario comprises almost 90 per cent of Ontario’s land mass, with a population of 807,000 people including approximately 130,000 Indigenous people.

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  • Usually when the gov’t says anything about Northern Ontario they mean Barrie or maybe as far as North Bay.

    It’s nice a change to see the task force consists of people from Northeastern and Northwestern Ont.

    Someone in the gov’t must have accidentally turned the printed Ont road map over found the rest of the province.