'U.S. should fund customs plaza,' consul general says
Douglas George, Canada's consul general in Detroit , also working on Windsor Hum
Douglas George, Canada's consul general in Detroit is confident the U.S. will pay its share for a new customs plaza at the site of a new international crossing between Windsor and Detroit.
Canada has agreed to pay for the construction of a new $1-billion bridge. It's even moved ahead on the project, building a $1.6-billion, four-lane highway leading up to the site of the proposed bridge and acquiring land in Michigan.
- Joint Canada-U.S. customs plaza pitched for $1B bridge
- Canada urges U.S. to pay $250M for Detroit-Windsor bridge
- Obama budget lacks funds for new Windsor-Detroit crossing
The U.S. has yet to announce $250 million US in funding for an inspection plaza on the American side.
"We've had discussions [with U.S. officials] and we're willing to discuss options on how the U.S. will meet its responsibilities to ensure the customs plaza is delivered," new consul general Douglas George told CBC's Windsor Morning host Tony Doucette.
George wouldn't speculate on when the U.S. might announce funding or what would happen should they not pay for the plaza.
"Our position is the U.S. should fund the U.S. customs plaza," he said.George started the job as consul general on May 2, after three decades working as a diplomat.
He thinks his experience will help him deal with tricky situations when representing Canada to Americans.
"I've been able to work constructively with them over most of my 32 year career," he said. "I'm sure that we'll continue this constructive approach to trying to find solutions to joint problems."
George says his top priority is the new international bridge. He's also working on the Windsor Hum.
"It’s been scientifically demonstrated the hum exists," he said. "We will move forward and see if something will be done with it."
George said he's scheduled to meet with mayor of River Rouge and officials from U.S. Steel, which has a production facility on Zug Island.
The source of the mysterious Windsor Hum, which began being reported in March 2011, is on Zug Island - in River Rouge, Mich. - according to a federally funded report released in May.
Zug Island is home to a U.S. Steel operation and is an area of concentrated steel production and other manufacturing.
Copies of the federal report have been given to Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder and the mayor of River Rouge.