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Todd Smith opens Conservative campaign office in the County

Todd Smith opened his campaign office in Picton Saturday with supporters and onlookers, at 6 Talbot St., Picton. Also at the opening was local broadcaster Tim Durkin who was recently chosen to represent the party in Bay of Quinte at the federal level.

With the writ expected to be dropped Wednesday heralding the official start of the June 7 provincial election, Progressive Conservative supporters and interested others officially opened incumbent Todd Smith’s County campaign office Saturday, at 6 Talbot St., Picton.

A former Conservative MPP, and first mayor of an amalgamated Prince Edward County, James Taylor, and wife Mary, were the guests of honour at the ribbon cutting. Taylor served in Premier Bill Davis’ cabinet as Minister of Community and Social Services, and as Minister of Energy. Friends were congratulating him on celebrating his 90th birthday last fall.

People are fed up with politics,” said Taylor, chuckling as he called it “a plague on all their houses… People have to know what they’re doing, and be careful.”

With that, he and Mary were pleased to show their support for Todd Smith’s return to Queen’s Park for a third stretch.

“There are a lot of things that are really bothering people in Ontario,” said Smith. “Particularly in rural Ontario. They feel like they’ve been ignored,” he noted, reflecting on the many new doors he is knocking on in the new riding which emcompasses Quinte West, and part of Belleville.

The new Bay of Quinte riding, mirrors the parameters of the federal riding, and is part of revamped electoral districts this year reflecting growing population across the province. This year there are 124 districts, up from 107.

“The one thing I’m hearing over and over again is that rural Ontario has been ignored by (Premier) Kathleen Wynne and this Liberal government, and taken advantage of,” he told party faithful and onlookers.

He spoke of several issues concerning County residents over recent years – including the Ostrander Point decision allowing just nine of 29 industrial wind turbines originally proposed.

“We’re still plugging away on the wpd project and trying to keep Prince Edward County naturally green, and turbine free and we have made a promise to do that in our plan that’s going to be unveiled,” he said. “We’ve already released some of the Hydro plan and we are very serious about that, and there will be no turbines in Prince Edward County, when we get a PC government.”

He also reflected on school closures in rural Ontario, noting a massive problem across the province, not just in Prince Edward County.

“Over the past 15 years, Kathleen Wynne and the Liberals have closed 600 schools – most of them in rural Ontario and that’s by far the most of any government in the province’s history. When you rip a school out of a community, or remove a hospital from a community, it tears the heart out of that community.”

He noted commitment to keeping rural schools open and looks forward to continuing the process of getting the new hospital built in Picton.

“The bottom line is we just can’t trust her anymore,” he said of the Premier. “Leading into the last election she said she wasn’t going to sell Hydro One and the first thing she did was sell Hydro One. Just the other day we found out she was lying about the budget deficit… Two years ago, or even as recently as six months ago, she was promising balanced budgets and now suddenly we are in a $6.7 billion deficit if you believe her, and if you believe the independent auditor general of the province of Ontario, it’s more like $12 billion.

“They’re going to promise a lot of different things,” said Smith. “And we can’t believe them. We really do need change in Ontario,” encouraging party faithful to get involved with the campaign.

Smith was first elected in 2011, and re-elected in 2014 and is currently Energy Critic for the official opposition. Previously he served as Critic for Natural Resources and Forestry, Small Business and Red Tape and Citizenship and Immigration Critic.

Meanwhile, Liberal party candidate Robert Quaiff is expected to be opening his County campaign office in Picton this week.

Filed Under: Local News

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  1. Fred says:

    Remember the circus at Toronto Council and the City under the Ford’s. Get ready Queens Park! We are in for a 4 year wild,wild ride.

  2. Susan says:

    This is a situation that causes advance poll opportunities to be problematic. Certainly many votes have been already cast for a leader prior to them having knowledge of several concerning issues brought to light. Those votes cannot be changed and could be a difference maker.

  3. Dennis Fox says:

    Emily asked about our hospital still being funded if the PCs are elected?

    Here is what the Ontario Health Coalition has to say about that very question. Please read the link…

    http://www.ontariohealthcoalition.ca/index.php/22-billion-in-cuts-to-funding-for-public-services-by-mr-ford-planned-worse-than-harris-we-are-extremely-worried/

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