Windsor Mayor Calls Conversation with Premier 'Positive'


Windsor's Mayor says a recent conversation with the Premier of Ontario was a positive one.

Drew Dilkens says he had about a 25 minute phone call with Doug Ford on Wednesday that centered mostly on the new acute care hospital for the region.

He says when Ford was in Lakeshore in July, he promised a follow-up conversation.

Dilkens says the Minister of Municipal Affairs, Steven Clark, was also on the call.

"There is no doubt in my mind that the premier and the minister, fully understand the position of the city and the support of the residents for this project to move forward," says Dilkens.

He says Premier Ford didn't raise any concerns with regards to the hospital but it was a chance for him to reiterate, in greater depth, the importance of the project for the community.

"He understands where we are in the process, that there is an appeal that is in front of the LPAT {Local Planning Appeal Tribunal}, so that we're waiting for a decision from that appeal," says Dilkens. "So he knows where we're at in the process and to really put to bed some of the concerns that some in the community have raised that I find to be rather in factual."


He says he appreciated the time Premier Ford took to talk to him on this one topic.

"I don't anticipate and I wouldn't expect the premier to say on the phone 'we're going to give you $9-million, don't worry Drew and don't worry about the appeal, we're going to do it right now.'  We understand that there's a process, but he also understands when that process comes to a conclusion, action has to happen," says Dilkens.

A three-day hearing of the appeal on the location for the proposed hospital, at County Rd. 42 and the 9th Concession, wrapped up earlier this month.

The appeal was launched by the Citizen's for an Accountable Megahospital Planning Process or CAMPP. The group wants the hospital to be located closer to downtown Windsor. 

The province has earmarked $1-billion for the $2-billion project. The city and County of Essex will split the other $1-billion.


With files from Teresinha Medeiros