Under The Dome

Several items have hit the news over the past six weeks that have prompted several calls or emails to my office and comment on social media.
I would like to set the record straight with the facts and my take on these issues as your Member of the Legislative Assembly for Riding Mountain.
Wait Times Reduction Task Force recommendations

Health, Seniors and Active Living Minister Kelvin Goertzen released the results of this task force – which made a stop in Hamiota last spring – on Dec. 20.
The report didn’t recommend specific changes to rural health care facilities, but concluded that it is not reasonable for rural residents to have to memorize the hours of emergency departments in facilities that are not open 24/7 or are subject to inconsistent service.
Rural residents are well aware of the changes our government has made in Winnipeg to address wait times and provide better health care service to citizens. Of course, this has met with considerable opposition by health care unions, which in turn has created a lot of misinformation.
As your MLA, I know that our government needs to insure 24/7 emergency rooms are available within a reasonable distance. I also know that many communities would benefit from “urgent care centres” at their facilities, which could be open consistent hours.
Times have changed, and our government recognizes that. Change is not easy, but with the absence of change there can be no progress.
My promise is to keep my constituents informed of any changes planned for the betterment of health care in Riding Mountain as decisions are made.
Pharmaceutical contract for Personal Care Homes 

Regional Health Authorities issued a request for proposals (RFP) last summer for the provision of pharmacy services for participating personal care homes (PCH). This RFP was open to all pharmacies in Manitoba, many of whom had an agreement with Manitoba Health to supply PCHs.
The results of that RFP were announced earlier this month and MediSystem Pharmacy Manitoba won the contract for all health regions in Manitoba, except for the city of Flin Flon.
The change is to take effect on April 1, but a phased-in approach over a six-month period may happen in some areas to insure a safe and seamless transition.
There is no reason to believe that the high quality pharmaceutical services, provided in most cases by pharmacies where the PCHs are located, will not continue by the successful bidder.
I am certainly of two minds on this.
As a rural resident, I understand that any reduction in support for local businesses has an effect on that business and a ripple effect throughout a community.
However, I also believe that reducing costs where possible is necessary to keep our health care system sustainable now and into the future.
I wish to personally thank all the pharmacists in the Riding Mountain constituency for the services they have provided to PCHs and for the day-to-care concern they have for their patients. Our government will continue to work with Manitoba pharmacists to leverage all that they can contribute to a co-ordinated approach to health care.
Manitoba Community Services Council – This entity was informed in January that its administrative funding would be cut for the 2018-19 fiscal year, and that the grants they administered would now be done by the province.

MCSC is well-known amongst organizations in rural Manitoba for the grants they provided. What doesn’t seem to be well known is that the money MCSC granted was taxpayer dollars.
As your government we want to make sure every dollar we spend goes to the important work of grassroots community organizations rather than paying for the duplication of services.
That means focusing resources on front line community services and reducing administration costs and duplication to insure hard-earned tax dollars are used to their full potential.
The bottom line is that yes, MCSC will receive less administrative funding, but the grant money that it administered will continue to flow to community organizations who depend on it.
That’s why we have created a single window for community organizations and municipalities to apply for grants, rather than having them go through a middleman,
Grants to community organizations are a priority and will continue to receive funding, as we saw with the recent announcement of $1.4 million for projects, $1.8 million in Community Places grants in December, and $700,000 in provincial funding to support the purchase of 27 new handi-vans for communities last year.

As your MLA, that’s what I want to see your hard-earned tax dollars spent on.
Greg Nesbitt is the Member of the Legislative Assembly for Riding Mountain. He can be reached at 204-759-3313, 1-844-877-7767 or by email at gregnesbittmla@mymts.net.

News Release – Fisheries


Greg Nesbitt, MLA for Riding Mountain



February 2, 2018

For Immediate Release




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Projects at Shell River Weir and Silver Beach to receive total of $46,830 in funding

Shoal Lake, Manitoba – Riding Mountain MLA Greg Nesbitt has announced $46,830 in funding for two aquatic infrastructure projects in the Lake of the Prairies Conservation District.


“Our government understands the importance of our lakes and rivers,” said Nesbitt. “This investment in critical aquatic infrastructure will help ensure our waterways remain healthy and productive.”


The funds for the two projects in the Riding Mountain constituency were approved by Sustainable Development Minister Rochelle Squires under the Fisheries Enhancement Fund.


Funding of $25,000 will go towards understanding the effectiveness of a fish passage constructed by the Lake of the Prairies Conservative District at an impassable control structure over the Shell River Weir upstream of Lake of the Prairies in 2016.


The fishway was constructed to allow fish to access the valuable spawning and nursery habitat upstream of the weir. The fishway was also built to create additional spawning habitat within the river.


The objectives of this project are: determine the effectiveness of the fishway; determine species and numbers of fish able to pass the structure; follow fish movement upstream using radio tags; and identify upstream spawning grounds.

Information from the study will also be used as an educational tool for students at area schools.


Funding of $21,830 will go towards the installation of a new aeration system at Silver Beach, north of Angusville.


The Province of Manitoba stocks roughly 400,000 walleye fry per year in Silver Beach. Without proper oxygen levels in the lake, the current stock of fish would likely winterkill.


This new aeration system will be more efficient using between $1,000 and $1,500 in hydro each month, rather than the $3,000 currently being paid by the Rural Municipality of Riding Mountain West.


The Lake of the Prairies Conservative District and municipality will work closely on operation and maintenance of the equipment.


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For more information, please contact:
Office of Greg Nesbitt, MLA