Word of a “first date” last Tuesday between representatives of area First Nations and municipalities warrants cautious optimism.
The glaring question, of course, is “What took so long?” And the realization by district leaders that we’re all in the same canoe—and need to paddle in the same direction to get anywhere—is worthy of a thunderous “D’uh!”
How to fairly fund the local District Social Services Administration Board is a recurring spat while the only ones benefiting from the ongoing dispute over Pither’s Point are lawyers. A legitimate plea for financial support of the Fort Frances Airport—which, in reality, serves the entire district—largely has fallen on deaf ears.
And as we saw during the search for a site for the OSB mill during the 1990s, ill feelings and petty jealousies too often obscure the fact that luring industry is a boon to the whole district, not just the specific community where it is located.
Any effort to better the district is welcomed, and certainly getting everyone together at one table is the best place to start.
But as we also know, talk is cheap. Concrete action is what’s needed so this “first date” can lead to marriage.