By Jim McDonell
In July of last year, the Ontario Ministry of Infrastructure had nominated Cornwall Transit to
receive funding under the Public Transit stream of the Investing in Canada Infrastructure
Program (ICIP). I was pleased to hear this week that the federal Government had finally
approved this project. With the provincial, federal and municipal agreement, Cornwall Transit
will receive approximately $11.8 million over ten years. The funding will go a long way to
improve the city’s public transit and includes funds to enhance accessibility on Handi-Transit
buses and at bus stops. There is a significant need for these services, as Cornwall Transit
provides about 35,000 rides for people with disabilities. These improvements are sure to help
Cornwall residents spend less time commuting, allowing them to do what matters most.
During the past several days, I have had the opportunity to visit with many business owners
who have recently re-opened under our Stage 2 guidelines. Their managers, employees and
volunteers are following through with the essential safety measures required to reduce the
spread of COVID-19. Customers have responded with equal dedication, showing a lot of
patience for adapting to the ‘new normal’ shopping experience. Not only will it save people
from contracting the virus, but it will also allow for the re-opening of more businesses and
activities as part of Stage 3. To promote our recovery, the Government has initiated
a campaign to encourage all Ontarians to “Shop Local! Shop Safe! Shop Confident!” Take this
opportunity to get what you need in one of our local stores, and on the way by, stop to pick up
some of the great food our local restaurants have to offer. Our Government has temporarily
removed the red-tape to encourage the construction of outdoor patios for restaurants. Our
summers are way to short, so take the time to enjoy it, while helping our local economy.
There is a real threat of a second wave that could result in another lockdown like other parts of
the world have witnessed. The Government continues to consolidate and update regulations
at www.Ontario.ca/covidsafety. The Eastern Ontario Health Unit is also available to provide
guidance. For the latest in Stage 2 restrictions, including social groups and activities, please go
I want to remind everyone that an up-to-date list of all federal and provincial programs for
individuals and businesses is available at http://covidsupports.ca/jimmcdonell. For those who
need assistance, my office continues to be available at [email protected] or 613-933-
6513 (toll-free 1-800-514-9660).
Each year Canada Day gives us a chance to celebrate all that this great country has to offer and
the accomplishments that Canadians have contributed worldwide. This year the day takes on a
new significance as we celebrate our ability to rally together to wage battle on COVID-19.
While we may not be able to gather in the usual way, it is a chance to recharge and reflect on
the past and our boundless future. I want to wish everyone a happy Canada Day. Enjoy the day
with your family, and remember to practice proper COVID procedures to protect your family.
MPP for Stormont-Dundas-South Glengarry