Fort Frances set to host NOMA

Fort Frances will be flooded with municipal, provincial, and federal leaders as the town hosts the Northwestern Ontario Municipal Association’s 55th-annual general meeting May 3-5.
Besides mayors, reeves, and councillors from municipalities across Northwestern Ontario, MPs and MPPs will be attending to discuss education, health care, infrastructure, and development in the north.
“There will be some discussions and presentations on Area Service Boards replacing District Social Service Administration Boards, with the difference being ASBs have taxing ability,” noted Mayor Glenn Witherspoon.
Meanwhile, having Northern Development and Mines minister Dan Newman and Tony Clement, minister of Health and Long-Term Care, on hand here gives Mayor Witherspoon and other councillors the chance to personally show them the town’s needs.
“We’ll personally take [Newman] to the jail and show him the infrastructure and proximity to the courthouse and the border,” said Mayor Witherspoon, who also plans to show Newman the town’s waterfront and the potential there as well as ask for more provincial funding for area roads.
“We’ll be talking to [Clement] about health throughout this area, with the injustice for people in the north being forced to travel to the south,” added the mayor.
“I’ll be busy.”
Local MP Robert Nault, also the minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development, as well as NDP leader and local MPP Howard Hampton also are among those expected to attend.
The meeting, to be held at La Place Rendez-Vous, is expected to bring about 200 people to Fort Frances that weekend.