Nov 02, 2012- 2:04 PM
The changes, which will take effect early next week, come following the resignation of Minister Kathleen Wynne.
At that point, Bob Chiarelli will become Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing, while continuing to serve as Minister of Transportation and Minister of Infrastructure.
Chris Bentley will become Minister of Aboriginal Affairs, while continuing to serve as Minister of Energy.
Algoma-Manitoulin MPP Michael Mantha said prior to the province's announcement that Wynne's decision to resign from cabinet would jeopardize the call for help to declare Wawa a disaster area.
Wynne, MPP for Don Valley West, announced she is resigning to seek the leadership of the provincial Liberals once McGuinty steps down.
“Yesterday (Nov. 1), I called on Minister Wynne to promptly declare Wawa a disaster area so the city would be entitled to receive financial assistance under the Ontario Disaster Relief Assistance Program (ODRAP),” Mantha said in a news release. “Twenty-four hours later, she resigns as minister to run for leader of the Liberal Party. Families in Wawa need answers: who's in charge of the ministry and who's going to make the decision to financially assist flood recovery efforts in the Wawa area?”
Mantha said he sent a letter to Wynne asking the government to step in promptly and deliver funds to the disaster-stricken area. Under the guidelines for the Ontario Disaster Relief Assistance Program (ODRAP), financial assistance can be provided by the province to affected municipalities for disaster response and recovery.
“The community of Wawa and surrounding areas urgently need the province's help. They are working around the clock but do not have the capacity, resources or finances to repair all damaged infrastructure due to severe flooding last week,” said Mantha. “The people of this province and Wawa deserve better. Who will help this suffering community now?”
McGuinty thanked Wynne for "serving Ontarians in a number of portfolios and for her commitment to public service. Our Cabinet remains committed to delivering progress for Ontario families and I thank Minister Chiarelli and Minister Bentley for taking on these added responsibilities."