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Horwath: Hamiltonians Must Mobilize for LRT

Ontario NDP leader Andrea Horwath encourages Hamiltonians to contact the Ontario Government and express their support for light rail transit.

In response to Metrolinx CEO Rob Pritchard's encouraging message to the Hamilton Economic Summit, Ontario NDP leader Andrea Horwath encourages Hamiltonians to contact the Ontario Government and express their support for light rail transit.

Here is the text of a recent letter she sent to the Hamilton Spectator (it was not published). It is reproduced here with permission.

I was encouraged to hear that Metrolinx CEO Rob Pritchard expects Hamilton to be the next major transit announcement. At the Hamilton Economic Summit, who wouldn't be encouraged to hear the head of the inter-regional transit agency saying he believes Hamilton is better advanced and has a big head start on being the next project to be announced?

However, I do believe we need to take his caution that competition is fierce and funding limited as a signal that Hamiltonians need to be ultra-proactive. In very short order, we need to communicate Hamilton's enthusiasm and determination for achieving its rapid transit vision.

The question is, how can we mobilize all the city's partners and transit enthusiasts quickly, not only to send a message that the we are determined to secure transit funding for Hamilton, but also that receiving 'no' as an answer is not an acceptable option?

Perhaps a letter writing campaign, petitions or even a Hamilton rally at Queen's Park would help to highlight for the Premier and his cabinet how essential light rail is to Hamilton's economic development and revitalization. Now the time is right for Hamiltonians to become vocal and keenly involved in supporting our fight for light rail transit. By working together our city can send a strong message to the Premier and will be less likely to be ignored.

For starters, I'd like to challenge every Hamiltonian to phone (416-325-1941), write or email Premier McGuinty and our Liberal MPPs in Hamilton and make them acutely aware of the high level of support there is for light rail in our city.

Hamilton Light Rail has just launched a campaign calling on the Ontario Government to commit to light rail in Hamilton.