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Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Why Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty’s resignation spells new opportunities for printers

Everywhere in the Canadian news this week you see headlines about Dalton McGuinty’s Monday-night resignation as Ontario’s Premier and Liberal Party Leader and his prorogation (suspension) of the provincial legislature until further notice. These front-page events deserve equal prominence in my Printing Blog, because without doubt they will also result in new opportunities for printers in 2013.

Here are two big reasons why:

A general provincial election is brewing in Ontario, although we don’t know exactly when. The provincial Party’s constitution requires the Liberals to pick a new leader within six months.  The latest predictions say that at the earliest it will be late January 2013 before the Liberals schedule their leadership convention for this purpose. 

Afterwards, Mr. McGuinty has left the decision of when to recall the legislature up to the new leader.  Whenever it happens, the ensuing sequence of events will likely be:  (a) a throne speech, (b) a budget, and (c) another prorogation to allow for a general election.  So by my estimate, even if the next Ontario election doesn’t fall in 2013, multiple candidates from all 107 ridings province-wide will be gearing up hard for the vote by the end of the year.  

Accordingly, my message to printers is:  start doing your research and promoting your services now to attract your share of all the many printing projects--signs, bumper stickers, campaign and polling-station collateral, or who knows what else—that will become rife as Ontario leads up to election day.

An election will also mean you have another precious opportunity to review each provincial political party’s stance on issues affecting your Ontario company and lobby anyone who wants your vote for constructive change. 

For instance, yesterday on LinkedIn I broadcast PrintAction’s breaking story about the fact that after over 30 years, Columbia Finishing Mills of Cornwall, Ontario, a small 12-person operation, has lost the contract to produce Canadian passport covers to Ottawa's Canadian Bank Note, a company that will reportedly outsource the production of the passport covers to Europe.

Although passports are a federal matter, note that before Ontario’s last general election on 6 October 2011, a similar issue of requiring Ontario tax dollars to be spent inside the province was one pillar of the provincial New Democratic Party (NDP)’s platform on small business.  For further details, see page 32 of my September-2011 column at:

Now it seems that, although Ontario usually holds its general elections four years apart, you will have another opportunity unusually soon to grill your local candidates—not just the NDP but candidates from all parties--to determine whether their policies on business are the approach you need to help your company prosper and grow.

Can anyone think of other pending bumper opportunities besides the two I’ve mentioned here?  If yes, please record them below so then we’ll all know.

PS:  In case you live outside of the province/country or haven’t had time to follow the headlines, here’s a sampling of the latest skinny on the McGuinty Liberals: