Provincial Conservative Leader Tim Hudak has named Sarnia-Lambton MPP (and supporter of Ontario’s natural gas industry) Bob Bailey, as PC critic of oil, gas and aggregates – a part of Natural Resources.
The elected member is only too happy to serve: “I’ve spent most of my life in industry, either in the construction sector or in the petrochemical sector with Nova and working with contractors in the oil, gas and pipeline division.”
That same passion is what drove Bailey to create and champion Bill 97 – The Natural Gas Superhighway Act, which aims to increase the use of compressed natural gas (CNG) and liquefied natural gas (LNG) as a transportation fuel on Ontario’s major routes. The act also prescribes higher weight limits for LNG vehicles (to account for the increased weight of their unique engines) and tax credits to those who purchase them.
On September 26, his Bill received unanimous support at Queen’s Park on a second reading of the proposed act. It will result in more access to clean, affordable and reliable natural gas as a transportation fuel. “I’m hoping I’ll get the same thing on the third reading and implement this because I think it’s important to the industry. It’s 25 to 30 per cent cheaper for the industry to use it and it’s 30 per cent cleaner than fuels like diesel,” Bailey added.
This is all part of Bailey’s clear understanding of the benefits of natural gas – conferring with industry experts and looking for opportunities to create jobs.
“With almost 600,000 people out of work, we need to do everything we can to encourage industry and… young men and women to go into these careers and make a good living,” Bailey said. “The natural gas sector contributes a billion dollars in Ontario alone, and pays over $170 million in annual taxes to the municipal, provincial, and federal governments.”
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