Green Party Leader announces mandate for Department of Rural Affairs and Community Development

Green Party Leader David Coon was in Nigadoo at noon today to present the mandate of the Department of Rural Affairs and Community Development and its strategy towards internet access for all regions of New Brunswick.

According to David Coon, development must be thought in the light of the climate emergency. "The economic recovery plan must be part of the solution rather than adding to the problem. The recovery must be green and fair," he said at a press conference. Supported by provincial funding and appropriate policies, he said local and regional communities will need to chart their own course, building on their unique assets, culture and territory.

This new department will be responsible for developing and implementing a regional development policy, support for renewable energy production and the protection and development of agricultural land.

"This department will operate with a decentralized structure and decision-making authority to support regional development and will be financially supported through the Northern Fund, which we will re-establish with other funds specific to the needs of the regions," said the Green leader. "New Brunswickers want to be more self-sufficient and we can. All we need to do is tap into the creativity and vital energy that already exists in our communities. »

The Green platform also tackles the glaring problem of internet access in rural areas, highlighted by the pandemic. "All regions of the province must have access to quality internet service.  We will accelerate our efforts to provide high-speed Internet access to all New Brunswick citizens and businesses," said Coon. To achieve this, he plans to require Internet providers to submit a solid action plan within the next six months and to have it in place within a year. If they fail to provide a concrete plan, "we are prepared to create a crown corporation to provide Internet access to all regions of our province. The time for half-measures is over. It is time for action," said Coon.