April 12, 2022 By Wings Staff
Patty Hajdu, Minister of Indigenous Services and Minister responsible for the Federal Economic Development Agency for Northern Ontario (FedNor), on March 30 announced more than $5.8 million in financial support for seven Northeastern Ontario airports. The funds are provided through the Government of Canada’s Regional Air Transportation Initiative (RATI), launched in March 2021 to supports access to air transportation and regional ecosystems.
“Regional air transportation ecosystems are critical for the thousands of workers employed by this sector and for the businesses and communities that depend on it,” said Hajdu. “We know that air connectivity to all regions is essential to healthy, inclusive growth, and supporting it is part of our plan to build back a stronger, more resilient economy.”
Of the $5.8 million total, the City of Timmins will receive $2,913,915, Earlton-Timiskaming Regional Airport Authority $1,222,812, Town of Kirkland Lake $900,000, Municipality of Wawa $332,264, Gore Bay Manitoulin Airport Commission $187,131, Town of Hearst $140,325, and the Town of Moosonee $90,000.
FedNor explains these non-repayable contributions will support nine initiatives that will help mitigate the financial pressures brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic by supporting airport operations, infrastructure enhancements and strategic planning. The projects are expected to help create or maintain 23 jobs and restore an additional five full-time positions in Northeastern Ontario.
“Airports support jobs and growth in all sectors of the economy by serving as transportation hubs for people, goods and services,” said George Pirie, Mayor of the City of Timmins. “I am pleased that today’s announcement will help mitigate the impacts of COVID-19 at the Victor M. Power Airport, while supporting economic recovery and growth efforts here in the City of Timmins and across Northeastern Ontario.”
The RATI, administered by the regional development agencies (RDAs), has a national budget of $206 million.