August 15, 2018 6:12 pm

Peterborough-Kawartha MPP Dave Smith reflects on first 6 weeks of new Ontario government

PC Dave Smith thanks supporters after being elected for Peterborough-Kawartha.

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The summer session of the Ontario Legislature has completed.

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In six weeks, the Ford government has made sweeping changes to a number of areas, including the cancellation of the 2015 sex-education curriculum and cap-and-trade to bringing back buck-a- beer and rolling out how Ontario will implement cannabis sales when it’s legalized in October.

“We’ve had 15 years of a lot of inaction and problems in Ontario,” said Dave Smith, Peterborough-Kawartha MPP. “We have to get to work to fix a lot of those problems, and that’s what we’ve done.”

READ MORE: Peterborough-Kawartha elects Dave Smith

On Tuesday, the Elementary Teachers Federation of Ontario fought back against the Ford government’s decision to scrap the 2015 sex-ed curriculum, in favour of going back to a curriculum developed in 1998 and used until 2014.

“We’re having a full set of consultations with parents and stakeholders this fall. We’ll roll out a curriculum that’s more age-appropriate that allows teachers to make modifications where they should be,” added Smith.

In July, the province scrapped the basic income pilot program early.

It was being implemented in a few communities including the City of Kawartha Lakes.

READ MORE: Hundreds protest cancellation of basic income pilot program

“It was a good idea that was rolled out poorly,” said Smith. “We know the social system is broken. We have had people on Ontario Works for more than five years. We have people on ODSP (Ontario Disability Support Program) that can’t make ends meet. That needs to be fixed.”

When cannabis is legalized in October, the province will start sales online before creating a private retail model by next spring.

READ MORE: Smiths Falls cannabis company Tweed prepares for privatized pot sales

“We’ll take that time to make sure whatever plan we put in place protects our youth and it doesn’t get in the hands of our young kids. We also need to get rid of the black market,” added Smith.

The opening of Smith’s constituency office on Water Street has been delayed, but he says it will open soon.

Smith and his staff can be reached at 705-742-3777 or at dave.smith@pc.ola.org.

The legislature resumes on Sept. 24.

© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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