Politicians Meeting at the Elmwood Community Centre. (Photo by Kirk Scott)

Politicians Discuss Ag Issues And More With OFA In Elmwood

The Ontario Federation of Agriculture continues to push to bring natural gas to rural Ontario.

O.F.A. President Keith Currie says they’re asking for a government investment of 75 million dollars a year for 20 years. He says after only year two the economic return on the investment would be as much as two hundred million dollars.
“So after year two there’s a positive economic bump to that investment so it’s a win win and after 20 years a minimum of a billion dollars is going to be coming back in to rural Ontario,” says Currie.

Currie says natural gas would be an important energy source for agriculture because it’s so much cheaper than hydro.
He has trouble understanding why the government is holding back.
“I’m struggling with why the money hasn’t come out. I guess the government of Ontario is going to have to tell their story as to why they won’t jump in right now but we’re still continuing our push because we see it as a real viable, long term option.”

Currie made the comments at the annual Politicians Meeting over the weekend in Elmwood.

Federal, provincial and municipal representatives were at the meeting put on by the Bruce and Grey County Federations of Agriculture.

Grey Federation president Mike Ryan says the meeting is important as politicians gradually become less directly involved in agriculture.
“That’s got less and less so as time has gone on and so keeping a connection as to what is actually going on in agriculture is very important, says Ryan.

Other issues discussed included school closures and predatory compensation rates. Commodity group representatives provided their perspective.