The federal budget, released Tuesday, held some big news for Kingstonians.
The Collins Bay and Joyceville prison farms seem to be set to reopen.
The federal budget includes a commitment to spend $4.3 million to reopen the agricultural side of the prison properties, which were shuttered by the former Conservative government in 2010.
Kingston and the Islands MP Mark Gerretsen confirmed the new funding today – that money will start to flow at the beginning of the new fiscal year this April.
“This is something people in Kingston have fought for – for so long. And to know it has finally come to fruition and the Federal government has put money to reopening these prison farms is absolutely amazing.” Gerretsen said.
READ MORE: MP Mark Gerretsen speaks to new funding
Supporters pushed to have the prison farm reopened as a way to rehabilitate inmates, and to promote local sustainability. They’ve protested outside the prison virtually every week for the past eight years, vowing to remain there until “the cows come home.”
“It spoke to what people can do when they passionately believe in something. There were so many people behind this cause and have been ever since they were closed seven or eight years ago, ” Gerretsen said, “and to see all their hard work come to fruition is amazing.”