Queen's Park Scuttlebutt: Christmas Hootenanny, College of Trades and Algonquin Land Claim

I hope you all had a very Merry Christmas. This is my last scuttlebutt for 2012 and I've got some news and some upcoming events to share with you.

On December 9th, I hosted my annual Christmas Hootenanny at Fiddleheads Bar and Grill in Perth. We had a great turnout and the wonderful Bowes Brothers play songs throughout the afternoon and had a grand 'ole time. You can find pictures on my Facebook page here. If you missed it, you still can celebrate the holidays with two New Year Levees I'll be hosting with my friend and colleague Scott Reid. Our first Levee will be in Napanee at Strathcona Paper Centre, 16 McPherson Drive on the 19th of January at 1PM. Our second Levee will be in Perth at Perth Civitan Hall, 6786 County Rd 43 on the 20th of January at 1PM. I hope to see you there!

You might also be interested in two upcoming events I'll be speaking at. On January 8th, I'll be hosting along with Steve Clark MPP for Leeds & Grenville a talk on the College of Trades with my colleague Garfield Dunlop, the PC Party's Critic for Apprenticeship Reform. If you are interested, please contact me for more information. As well,I'll be guest speaker at the Lanark and Leeds Homebuilders Association at the Stone Cellar on 71 Gore Street East in Perth the next day. Cocktails start at 6PM and dinner at 7PM.

You may remember the petition I started shortly after the legislature was proroged to the Lieutenant Governor of Ontario. I delivered the petition to the LG's office on October 31 you can see a video of that here). Despite over 2,600 people from our riding and from across the Province of Ontario, I received a letter from the Lieutenant Governor saying he sent it to the Premier. Had the Petition been addressed to McGuinty, it would have been delivered to his office.

As you may know, there is a proposed Algonquin Land Claim. I have been following the developments closely and have read the entire proposal. I have briefed the Chief Negotiator on some of my concerns and will continue to ensure that the outcome is fair for all those involved. I will be briefing the Chief Negotiator and the negotiating team in person at the beginning of the new year.

Since the last Scuttlebutt you received, I also had the opportunity to be  the key note speaker at events at the University of Toronto and at Queen's University about the virtues of democracy and why and how students should/can get involved. The thing these students were particularly interested in that you might also be is the PC Party's proposal to scrap the LCBO and Beer Store monopoly. You can read about this plan and the rest of our "New Deal for the Public Sector" here.

From my family to yours, I wish you a very happy new year and all the best in 2013,

Randy Hillier, MPP
Lanark-Frontenac-Lennox and Addington