Tag: liberal

    Ontario to loosen liquor laws

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    This isn’t directly Niagara Falls-related, but it will affect some different festivals that are held here, especially the big New Year’s Eve party.

    From the Niagara Falls Review:

    A beer outside a designated beer tent? An extra hour of drinking at a wedding reception? These new freedoms are just around the corner.

    Ontario has changed its alcohol laws in a move Premier Dalton McGuinty’s Liberal government says will create jobs and strengthen the economy.

    Announced Friday, the relaxed restrictions kick in on June 1.

    Among the new rules, drinking will be allowed outside of beer tents at festivals and events.

    “Local communities are free to customize the events to their needs,” said a government news release.

    Justify sole-source contract: MPP

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    From the Niagara Falls Review:

    Whatever information Niagara’s regional tourism organization used to justify an “exception” from the province’s ban on single-source contracts, it should be disclosed to the public to ensure public confidence in the agency, Niagara Falls MPP Kim Craitor says.

    “I think that the chairman of the board should explain to the media or to the public what they presented to the bureaucrats that convinced them this should be an exception,” Craitor said Th ursday.

    The first project by Niagara’s regional tourism organization — a body created last year by Ontario’s Liberal government to promote tourism — led to a controversy after it was revealed it commissioned Niagara Fallsbased Rev Publishing to produce a glossy $500,000 tourism magazine without putting it out to tender.

    “This is not a good way for it to start out,” said Craitor, who is also parliamentary assistant to Ontario Tourism Minister Michael Chan.

    Falls will feel HST pinch: PC critic

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    From Niagara This Week:

    Dalton McGuinty will have his hands in honeymooners’ pockets with the introduction of the harmonized sales tax, according to the Progressive Conservative party’s tourism critic.
    Ted Arnott, MPP for Wellington-Halton Hills, was in Niagara Falls Tuesday to talk tourism. Speaking to a group of residents and tourists at the bottom of Clifton Hill, he outlined some possible effects the new Harmonized Sales Tax (HST) could have on tourism in the honeymoon capital.
    “It (the HST) is going to impact negatively on tourism,” said Arnott.

    Hudak also abandoned tourism

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    From the Niagara Falls Review:

    It’s ironic to hear Ontario Conservative Leader Tim Hudak accuse the Liberal government of “abandoning” tourism in Niagara Falls, but that’s politics.

    Hudak and Conservative tourism critic Ted Arnott blasted Liberal Tourism Minster Michael Chan for not visiting Niagara Falls since he became the provincial cabinet minister responsible for the industry in January.

    While Hudak met last week with business leaders from Niagara’s industry, Arnott emailed (for at least the third time) a press release saying “McGuinty Liberals abandon Niagara tourism.”

    But when it comes to abandoning Niagara, Hudak seems to have a short memory. In 1995, he was part of the Mike Harris government that scrapped plans to move the entire Ministry of Tourism headquarters to Queen Street, Niagara Falls from downtown Toronto.

    If the Tories had relocated the ministry office to the Honeymoon Capital from the provincial capital, every tourism minister would have visited Niagara Falls regularly to check in with the bureaucracy staff.

    Tourism minister needs a map to find Falls: Hudak

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    From the Niagara Falls Review:

    Ontario Conservative Leader Tim Hudak offered to pick up a map for Liberal Tourism Minister Michael Chan to help the government’s point man for the industry find his way to one of the province’s most popular destinations.

    “I just think it’s shocking someone who has the title Minister of Tourism has not bothered to visit Niagara Falls, particularly given the concerns that we have as we head into this tourism season,” Hudak said after meeting local industry representatives Wednesday in Niagara Falls.

    Tories raise questions about Maid of the Mist deal

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    From CTV Toronto:

    The controversy over a 25-year lease renewal for the Maid of the Mist tourist boats in Niagara Falls spilled into the Ontario legislature Monday, with the Opposition alleging political interference by the Liberal government.

    The Niagara Parks Commission decided to extend the lease with the American operators of the tour boats, the Maid of the Mist Steamboat Company, without putting it out for competitive bids, prompting a lawsuit and an investigation by Ontario’s integrity commissioner.

    The Liberals are already under fire over millions of dollars in untendered contracts awarded by eHealth Ontario and shouldn’t be approving this one, said Progressive Conservative critic Bob Runciman.

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