Bruce-Grey-Owen Sound candidates handle questions during virtual meeting

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The six candidates for the Bruce-Grey-Owen Sound riding covered some ground during an all-candidates meeting Tuesday, hosted by the Owen Sound Chamber of Commerce.

One of the first questions out of the gate had to deal with housing.

Liberal candidate Anne Marie Watson talked about the party’s plan to get younger people into home ownership.

“We’re going to commit a billion dollars in loans and grants in rent to own programs,” said Liberal candidate Anne Marie Watson. “We’re going to introduce at tax free home savings account to help young people save up to $40,000 for their down payment.”

Green Party candidate Michelle Lawrence says more grants for people just means more pressure on the market adding there are other options.

“The Green Party would like to finance non-profit and cooperative rental housing to have better, safer, energy efficient building standards.”

Conservative candidate Alex Ruff says he’s talked to developers about a commitment when plans are introduced.

“Maybe putting some plan in place, when a developer wants to build housing that 25 per cent of that could be separated for affordable housing.”

NDP candidate Christopher Neudorf says the party has a plan to build half a million, affordable homes.

“These are to give Canadians, through co-op rental opportunities, an eco-friendly opportunity to be able to rent at a reasonable rate. This will force speculative landlords to drive down their costs to compete.”

People’s Party of Canada candidate Anna-Marie Fosbrooke stated grants aren’t the answer.

“There are means to address these things other than subsidies that distort the housing market,” said Fosbrooke.

Independent candidate Remia Kaikkonen shared his view.

“It is basically caused by unusually, artificially low borrowing costs.”

A local issue was brought forward during the meeting.

Candidates were asked about their stance on the TC Energy plan for a hydroelectric pumped storage plant on the federally owned shorline on DND property near Meaford.

Conservative candidate Alex Ruff says for him, the pros don’t outweight the cons at this point.

“And I’m still waiting for TC Energy to make a real clear business case on what problem they’re going to solve and how this is going to help our area and all Ontairo taxpayers.”

Green candidate Michell Lawrence says there are some ideas that may not be as ‘green’ as first thought.

“Intake and outake of all this water is not held high enough to environmental standards and there is a lot of impact on the local ecosystem.”

People’s Party of Canada said the facts should dominate the outcome.

“So you could show me 700 pages of consultation and studies, but what people deserve to know and often don’t know, is what is the impact. What is the impact in the short term and what is the impact in the long term.”

NDP candidate Christopher Nuedorf says, as a country, we push too much on indigenous people.

“And the Nawash and Saugeen Nations should have the right to say whether or not they approve of this. We have a terrible habit in this country of forcing potentially dangerous environmental construction on indigenous territory.”

Liberal candidate Anne Marie Watson says people need more information.

“I don’t think the project is as efficient as we would like to see right now and I don’t know if the outcome of this is going to be worth the damage it has the potential of doing to the environment.”

The full meeting for the Grey-Bruce-Owen Sound candidates can be found by clicking here.

Read original story from Midwestern Ontario News –