While Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne says the province still plans to sell the Ontario Northland Transportation Commission, one member of an advisory committee appointed to provide input on the sale says he hopes the ONTC will be kept in public hands.

Leaders from municipalities, industry and First Nations gathered in North Bay Monday to discuss the sale of the ONTC.

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Ontario Northland bus service will still continue after the ONTC's train service ends, but some are still hopeful the province will hang on to the train service. (Yvon Theriault/CBC)

One of those committee members is North Bay mayor Al McDonald. He said municipal leaders have been pushing to be involved with the process since the government announced its intent to sell.

"This has been a battle for almost a year now and we're trying to indicate why it makes sense to keep it in public hands — and really what it means to the people of northern Ontario, especially in the northeast," McDonald said.

McDonald said it's encouraging that the province is looking for feedback about the divestment from people in the northeast.