Winnipeg Free Press - ONLINE EDITION
ELA petitions not a sign of discord
In the last two weeks at least three Conservative MPs have tabled petitions in the House of Commons calling on the government to change its mind about the decision to no longer fund the Experimental Lakes Area.
On Nov. 19, both Stephen Woodworth (MP for Kitchener Centre) and Harold Albrecht (MP for Kitchener-Conestoga) tabled petitions on the subject.
Mr. Stephen Woodworth (Kitchener Centre, CPC):
"Mr. Speaker, I have several petitions.
The first petition has 38 signatures from Montreal, Vancouver and the London-Waterloo region asking the Government of Canada to, among other things, continue to staff and fund the Experimental Lakes Area at current or higher levels of commitment. The second petition is by another 36 people from the Kitchener area to the same effect."
Mr. Harold Albrecht (Kitchener—Conestoga, CPC):
"Mr. Speaker, I rise to present petitions from Kitchener-Waterloo and Guelph calling upon the government to provide financial resources to the ELA at the current or a higher level of commitment."
Then yesterday Winnipeg MP Joyce Bateman did the same thing although with a little less detail. She didn't actually say what the petitions were asking for.
Ms. Joyce Bateman (Winnipeg South Centre, CPC)
"Mr. Speaker, I have the pleasure to present a number of petitions from the constituents of my riding of Winnipeg South Centre. A number of them are related to save ELA, Canada's leading freshwater research station.
But these petitions are not a sign of a revolt from the government back benches to save the unique research facility near Kenora. MPs quite often submit petitions delivered to their office whether they agree with the premise or not. Both Woodworth and Albrecht said they did not agree with the petitions and Bateman has been clear before she supports the government decision.
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About Mia Rabson
Mia Rabson is a born and bred Winnipegger whose interest in politics seemed clear when she dressed up as Prime Minister Brian Mulroney for Halloween in the 7th grade.
Her interest in writing was no surprise to her parents, who learned early in Mia’s life that no piece of blank paper — or wall, for that matter — was safe in her hands.
She holds an honours BA in English from Queen’s University, a master’s degree in journalism from the University of Western Ontario, and has completed a political journalism fellowship in Washington, D.C. with the Washington Centre for Politics and Journalism.
Prior to working for the Winnipeg Free Press, Mia briefly worked for the Detroit News in the paper’s Washington bureau.
Mia joined the Free Press team in February 2001, and in April 2001 was appointed to the Manitoba legislature bureau. In December 2004, she was appointed bureau chief at the legislature. She became the newspaper’s parliamentary bureau chief/national reporter in Ottawa in January 2008.
In 2008 she was nominated for a Michener Award with a team of reporters from the Free Press for its coverage of the province’s child welfare system.
She counts reliving the invasion at Dieppe, France, with veterans of the failed Second World War expedition and overcoming her fear of heights to touch the Golden Boy statue atop the Legislative Building among her favourite experiences as a reporter.
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