Northern Ontario communities praise economic benefits of electricity policy

SUDBURY, ON, Aug. 18 /CNW/ - The Federation of Northern Ontario Municipalities (FONOM) applauds the Ontario Government's electricity policy reforms as an urgently needed boost for struggling communities across Northern Ontario.

"Communities across the north have been advocating for a more efficient and affordable electricity option for industry for a very long time," said Alan Spacek, Mayor of Kapuskasing and FONOM President.  "It's essential in order for us to be competitive in this economy. This will support major employers in the north -- mining, forestry and manufacturing - to make investments in our communities and create jobs."

The reforms provide incentives for large industries to reduce demand for electricity during critical peak times. It rewards energy efficiency and conservation efforts, benefiting the environment while creating a more stable electricity system.

"This is welcome news to the hardworking people in northern towns who have seen many jobs disappear," Spacek said. "This gives us hope that our industries can remain competitive and provide job stability."

Employment in Northern Ontario has fallen by more than twice the rate of the province as a whole. For many northern industries, energy costs have steadily become less competitive with rates in neighbouring Manitoba and Quebec. Spacek estimates the potential benefit of electricity reforms in some communities could be worth millions of dollars to local industries. These savings will make businesses more competitive, maintaining and creating jobs in the north.

FONOM is comprised of 110 municipalities, towns and cities in Northeastern Ontario. It advocates for strategies, policies and programs that support the unique needs and challenges of Northern Ontario. The Federation of Northern Ontario Municipalities' mission is to improve the quality of life of all northerners and to ensure the future of its youth.


For further information: For further information:

Alan Spacek,
President, FONOM
Cell: 1-705-335-0001

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