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Hospitals warn of more cuts to patient care
Provincial budget reduced funding, association says
Southam News and Jennifer Kennedy The St.Catharines Standard
Hospitals already facing a nursing shortage and growing demand say they'll have no choice but to cut patient services after the province reduced their funding this week by $100 million. While exact funding for Niagara hospitals is not yet known, patients would likely feel the effects of any cuts. "Clearly if you got less money, it means less service," said Larry Tokarchuk, chief executive officer of the Niagara Health System. "And there's not much more you can say about that." The situation is complicated by a proposed new law that would force hospitals to balance their budgets starting this fiscal year, the Ontario Hospital Association said Thursday.
Province pours $1.8 million into wine industry
Funding will help train vintners and improve marketing of vintages
Kalvin Reid The St.Catharines Standard
The future of Niagara's wine industry is getting a significant boost from the province. The Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs is directing funds to Niagara College and the Wine Council of Ontario to train future vintners and better market Ontario products, Agriculture Minister Brian Coburn announced at Vineland Estates Winery on a sunny and hot Thursday. "We know we produce some of the best wines," Coburn said in an interview following the announcement of $1.18 million for the wine council and $570,850 for Niagara College. "The challenge is to get out there and market it so you increase your percentage of sales globally. You're competing with some who have had a head start on you, whether they are from France or other areas." The money for the wine council, from the Healthy Futures for Ontario Agriculture program, will kickstart the agency's strategic plan, said executive director Linda Franklin.
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