Liberals’ fiscal mismanagement puts Hwy. 7 expansion in jeopardyAugust 8, 2012
WOOLWICH — The Liberal government has spent nine years wasting billions of dollars on scandals, like eHealth, Ornge and cancelled gas plants, while delaying essential infrastructure projects, like the promised expansion of Highway 7 in Waterloo Region, Kitchener-Conestoga MPP Michael Harris said at a press conference today.
The Liberals promised to upgrade the two-lane portion of Highway 7 between Kitchener and Guelph into a four-lane road in their 2007 budget, but just three years later they chose to cancel this important project, citing fiscal constraints.
“The Liberals claim they had to cancel the Highway 7 expansion project because of their government’s worsening financial situation, yet they had no problem wasting $190 million on their Liberal seat-saver program to relocate the Mississauga gas plant,” Harris said at Belgian Nursery, a small business located along Highway 7. “The Liberals hum and haw over spending money on critical economic infrastructure, but have no problem shelling out nearly $200 million to save Liberal seats in the GTA – an amount which could have funded nearly two-thirds of the highway expansion.”
Earlier this year, Kitchener-Centre MPP and Government House Leader John Milloy claimed that the Highway 7 expansion project was still a priority for him, even though the Liberal government neglected to include even one word about expanding the highway in its long-term infrastructure plan, called “Building Together,” released in June 2011.
“How can anyone take Mr. Milloy’s comments seriously? If the Liberal government was truly serious about completing this project, they would have had shovels in the ground in 2010, when they promised to begin construction. The people of Waterloo Region must hold Mr. Milloy and his Liberal colleagues accountable for their failure to manage the province’s finances,” Harris said.
“With more than 22,000 drivers travelling between Kitchener and Guelph everyday, the PC Party understands that developing Highway 7 is needed to both enhance public safety and improve the flow of goods and people.” Harris said. “So the Liberals owe the people and businesses of Waterloo Region a clear statement on the status of Highway 7 today.”