Living up to our promise

On Thursday, my colleague, Mike Mantha, MPP for Algoma-Manitoulin, will introduce a private member’s bill to remove the HST from home heating bills.
This is the first step in living up to our pledge to make life more affordable for hard-working families.
Fortunately, the minority Parliament gives us a chance to push this bill through, with Progressive Conservative leader Tim Hudak stating he personally supports the bill.
What he’s not been as clear in stating is whether his entire caucus will support the bill. And with the balance of power being so slim, we need each and every member of both parties supporting this bill to ensure its success.
It is for that reason that I encourage everyone to be vocal with their support of this bill. I encourage you to write or e-mail me, through my closest constituency office, stating why you support removing the HST off of home heating and encouraging members from all parties to support this endeavour.
?By telling your stories, you can help me put pressure on the Liberal government and tell them of the harm taxing this essential service is causing in our communities.
I also would encourage people with families in the Thunder Bay region, including Atikokan, to contact their Liberal MPPs to put pressure on them to vote in favour of this motion.
Some of you may wonder why I am not presenting this bill, and that is a fair question. Private member’s bills are presented in sequence, one through 107. That sequence is picked by a random draw which was done a few weeks ago by the Clerk of the Assembly at Queen’s Park.
Mr. Mantha was fortunate enough to be the first New Democrat to have his name picked and our party wanted to give this initiative our top priority, meaning he has the opportunity to present this bill.
My name, on the other hand, was drawn as one of the final members, meaning it will be a few months before I am able to present my own bill.
I’m currently in the process of considering a number of possible options for my private member’s bill and am hoping to hear from as many people as possible before I make a decision on what to bring forward.
Even though I am not introducing the bill to remove the HST from home heating bills personally, I want you to know it has my full support and I am committed to doing everything possible to ensure it passes.
I hope many of you will take time to write letters of support to help us make our case for this important measure.

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