Jim's Platform

The Liberal Party of Newfoundland and Labrador
It is now time to revitalize our great Party that built this great Province. Our District Associations need our support with hands-on-advice, and the production of an Operational and Fundraising Tool Kit. We must place significant effort on rebuilding from the ground up so that we can ensure the Party remains true to the Liberal values that shaped it.
-As Liberal Leader I will have all 48 District Associations up and running by May of 2014.

The current Government has gone far off course. When we form the next Government there will be a great deal of work to be done in short order. We will have to repeal the secrecy protection in Bill 29, set up proper committees in House of Assembly, develop real citizen engagement processes, and work to reduce the damage and impact of Muskrat Falls on your power bill.  
-As Liberal Leader I will repeal Bill 29 and lead a Government focused on 
       openness, accountability, and public engagement.

Economic Development
Recent years have seen significant development of large-scale projects that have largely benefited urban regions of our Province, and have done little to grow our rural economy. We must also increase investment and reduce red tape for small and medium-sized businesses across the fishing, tourism, forestry and service sectors that are the backbone of our rural communities.  
-As Liberal Leader I will lead a Government that will support small and medium sized 
       business development.
-I will also work toward the extension of the Labrador Rail service from Labrador West to 
       the Port of Lake Melville.
Our current healthcare system is struggling to meet the needs of Newfoundlanders and Labradorians. First we need a complete audit of the systems to see where its done right and where its done wrong. We need to duplicate the successes, improve efficiency and reduce the waste. We must also enhance our efforts on preventative health measures and healthy lifestyles.  
-As Liberal Leader I will lead a Government that will encourage preventative healthcare, 
       and ensure that every dollar spent is to the maximum benefit of patients.

Social Justice
Despite the current wealth in some sectors there are still those who require our assistance. We must ensure that our collective wealth is used to benefit our entire society and that includes the disabled and the poor. We have to also recognize that it was our seniors who built this wonderful Province, and many of them now need help. We have to ensure that they benefit from their lifetime of contributions.
-As Liberal Leader I will lead a Government that will work diligently to provide adequate 
       help to those who need it.

Community Development
Our municipalities play such an important role in community building and service delivery but yet they have been so neglected over the years. A municipal review that includes a fair fiscal arrangement, proper resources, and the exploration of regional service delivery options is required to modernize the sector.  
-As Liberal Leader I will lead a Government willing to work with municipalities to 
       develop strategic funding arrangements that can meet the needs of the communities 
       we live in.

Our communities have seen a rise in organized crime activities and drug abuse over the past few years. This indicates that criminals have found our Province a profitable place to exploit. We must work to ensure that Newfoundland and Labrador is a place where it is not profitable for organized criminals to operate, and addicts get appropriate treatment.  
 -As Liberal Leader I will appoint a Special Prosecutor for organized crime to seize 
        assets, impose maximum penalties and ensure that organized criminals are cutoff from 
        any possible financial base.   
-I will also expand and upgrade drug and alcohol rehabilitation services to help addicts 
        and reduce crime.  

Our transportation system has been plagued with political tampering and insufficient effort for too long. Infrastructure upgrades are doled out based on political preference and not open to public scrutiny. In addition our ferry services have been suffering due to inadequate ferries that were mostly not designed for the purposes for which they are currently being used.
-As Liberal Leader I will implement a public infrastructure ranking process that would 
       see investment based on actual need instead of political whim. 
-I will also develop a Provincial Ferry Strategy that would see our replacement purpose built 
       ferries constructed right here in Newfoundland and Labrador.

By treating education as an expense our current education system has taken students to near the bottom of national rankings. Education must be treated as an investment in order to bring our students back to acceptable levels of academic performance. This can only be achieved by the appropriate involvement of parents in that investment.
-As Liberal Leader I will ensure democracy and local input is reintroduced into the 
       education system.