Guests: Rob Flack, MPP (bio from Mark) Deb Ranson (Rob’s Executive assistant) Bob Warnock
Cindy’s notes of Rob Flack (photo above) talk:
First Rotary club talk since elected. Father was Rotarian, remembers the fondness of fellowship of Rotarians.
9 months in office - “be careful what you wish for” (tongue in cheek). Real work is done at home. In the legislature, there’s a lot of theatrics but good processes. Constituency work (Elgin Middlesex London) – cosmopolitan country riding – many cultures and perspectives – all wanting to do well for their community. Many, many people coming in for meetings wanting funding for their worthy causes – can be overwhelming and daunting. 
Ontario is 190 billion dollar “business” that has debt. Well over half goes to healthcare and  education. Meeting demands of growing and aging population related to healthcare is daunting. Cost $55M to build University Hospital – to rebuild it today with modern technology is $2.2B. We have an excellent Minister of Finance who helps to balance the needs. Ontario had an open forum for people to advocate for their needs – they had 3 minutes each and made their proposal to minister of finance. If they said yes to everyone in
Ontario there would be a $200 billion deficit. It’s been good to meet so many different people. Got funding for new school in Belmont.
Agriculture – has a cattle farm in Ottawa valley and harvests white pine. Has taken on a few files with
Agri-Food. New fertilizer program (we import a lot of nitrogen from Russia and feds put a tariff on it)
–seed money to innovators for new fertilizers. Movement of animals across the border and bringing
their parts back is not allowed – working on new legislature for that. 1 million more dogs put in homes
during covid and now they are filling shelters. Shortage of vets. Change vet act that has not been changed in 40 years. 
Decisions are at “glacial speed” in government. The process is a political minefield. Das Auto (VW) – year ago opportunity presented itself along with other potential investors. Had to find 500-1500 acres (job-site challenge). St. Thomas was best site in Ontario. Ontario purchased the 1500 acres of land and will pay to prepare the site (power, roads, water, waste etc.). Bringing manufacturing jobs back to Ontario that have been lost over the last decades. Tertiary spinoff jobs. We were in competition with 40 U.S. States and another 50 worldwide but we have clean energy (not coal) and we can mine the minerals we need for batteries in Northern Ontario. Many benefits. St. Thomas will need to grow its infrastructure. Targeting to have plant operating by 2027. (editorial note: action since the announcement of battery plant is at lightning speed, a bush lot has already been cleared).
2-3M more people coming to Canada in the next decade and most will come to Ontario. We are still a net exporter of food.
Costs under $800k a year to keep the old psych hospital just sitting there - Rob advocating to do something with it.
Ron Somerville – distinguished as multiple Paul Harris fellow *3
April JackPot bingo dates – April 17 th 12-2pm, April 28 th 2-4pm – need volunteers
Malcolm will go March 23 (Thursday) – drop-in session for updates on Hospice of Elgin projects; also Trudy, Mark.
50/50 winner – Ron
Happy Finns (more to follow)
Ron – Paul Harris, winning 50/50
Cindy – Ron getting Paul Harris, love for Maggie and 
Save the Date: District Conference
Friday, June 23 – Sunday, June 25, 2023
Gateway Hotel & Convention Center
5353 Gateway Centre Boulevard
Flint, Michigan 48507
Erin Zorzi Rotary Club of Port Elgin
District 6330 Friendship Exchange Chair
A wonderful team of 10 travelers from Lithuania will be coming to our District for a Fellowship Exchange, May 11 to 21, 2023. Please contact Erin if you wish to assist with hosting or inviting to our events.
We are invited to attend the 2023 Keynotes Concert Friday, March 31, 2023 7:00 p.m.
Central United Church, 135 Wellington St. Trudy met with music scholarship committee to give guidance on allocation of this years awards.
In a recent Facebook post, the Kettle Creek Conservation Authority thanked those who worked diligently to remove invasive species at Lake Margaret last Saturday. They want to know if we can help again to remove garlic mustard; date to be determined.
The winners of our raffle for Tim Horton's Brier tickets (Harry Joosten and Kathleen Murphy) had a great time at the championship game last night. AND we raised $1700 for the great things our club does to support local and international communities! Win-Win!! Picture taken from our Facebook page.