Today, the Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Health, on behalf of the Honourable Catherine McKenna, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities; the Honourable Ross Romano, Ontario’s Minister of Government and Consumer Services and Member of Provincial Parliament for Sault Ste. Marie, on behalf of the Honourable Kinga Surma, Ontario’s Minister of Infrastructure; and Robinson Meshake, Board of Directors President for the Matawa First Nations Management, on behalf of the Matawa First Nations, announced funding for 35 community infrastructure projects across Ontario.
The Government of Canada is investing $65,880 in the wastewater planning study and detailed design, and flow meter purchase project in Kiashke Zaaging Anishinaabek through the Clean Water and Wastewater Fund. Additionally, the Government of Canada is investing over $1.4 million in the Ka-Na-Chi-Hih Treatment Centre Sioux Lookout Program expansion in Sioux Lookout and the Health and Safety Coolant System, Roof Hatch, and Flooring Upgrade project for the N’Swakamok Native Friendship Centre in Sudbury through the Community, Culture, and Recreation Stream of the Investing in Canada Program. The Government of Canada is also investing over $28.7 million in the remaining 32 projects through the COVID-19 Resilience Stream of the Investing in Canada Program. The Government of Ontario is providing over $7.5 million to these projects, while the Ka-Na-Chi-Hih Treatment Centre is investing $121,061, and the N’Swakamok Native Friendship Centre is investing $9,776 in their respective projects.
Among the projects announced is the Matawa Education and Care Centre gymnasium upgrade project in Thunder Bay. The project involves the construction of a new gymnasium at the facility. Once completed, this project will provide a dedicated space for health and physical education programming and will support the Matawa Education and Care Centre’s holistic approach to well-being, providing residents with a space to do activities where they can stay fit and healthy.
In Thunder Bay, renovations and retrofits to the Dennis Franklin Cromarty First Nation High School will provide students access to a more reliable and safe space to learn. Work includes repairs to the leaking roof, the replacement of the sewage and water pipes, upgrades to the HVAC, electrical, and sprinkler systems, and asbestos abatement. Further work includes the installation of new flooring, the reconstruction of one of the entrance ramps to the school and repairs to the service elevator.
Also being announced is the expansion of the Ka-Na-Chi-Hih Treatment Centre located in Sioux Lookout. The scope of the project involves renovations to a former school which will provide a safe and welcoming healing space that supports land-based and traditional practices and will support the Centre’s expansion of its treatment program in order to increase the number of youth served. Once completed this will allow the Ka-Na-Chi-Hih Treatment Centre to provide a long-term residential treatment program for Indigenous and Northern Ontario communities.
Additional investments in other community infrastructure projects across Ontario include the installation of portable classrooms in a number of Indigenous communities including Eabametoong First Nation, Aroland First Nation, Fort Severn First Nation, Webequie First Nation, Marten Falls First Nation, Long Lake First Nation, Neskantaga First Nation, and Nibinamik First Nation. Other projects include upgrades to Alternative Secondary Schools in Ottawa, Hamilton, Red Lake, Sudbury, Sault Ste. Marie, Timmins, Fort Frances, Kenora, and Fort Erie. Meanwhile, a Clean Water and Wastewater Fund project in Kiashke Zaaging Anishinaabek will upgrade the community’s sewage lagoon which will improve the environment and receiving water source.
The COVID-19 Resilience Infrastructure Stream, implemented in response to the pandemic, allows the Government of Canada to invest up to 80 per cent of eligible costs for projects in provinces, and up to 100 per cent for projects in territories and Indigenous communities. The Government of Ontario will invest 20 per cent of the eligible costs for projects across the province.