TORONTO - The Matera - Toronto “twinning” proposal received further injection of support on Friday, September 23 when the Basilicata Society group led by Frank Miele met with Mayor John Tory. The group (Dan Montesano, Sam Primucci and Pat Tremamunno) was accompanied by MP Judy Sgro on this occasion to present the key to Matera.
It came courtesy of the mayor and city council of the Cultural Capital of Europe for 2019.
“Mayor Tory was genuinely delighted to discuss our proposal”, said Frank Miele. “It's true he will not commit until the Economic Development Committee reports, but we were able to present some facts and fi gures that we know are going to be well received”, he added.
For his part, Sam Primucci felt some serious steps had already been taken to move expeditiously towards the goal. “Councillor Michael Thompson who chairs the Economic Development Committee is supportive, and has promised to work closely with the Director of Economic Development, George Spezza, to ensure that the most thorough assessment is concluded; I am confi dent it will lead to a positive outcome”, he beamed.
Mr. Spezza is uncle to the NHL star Jason Spezza and husband to the charming Carole Flig, a former employee of the Pizza Nova chain. Yes, it is a small world.
The important thing is that Mr. Spezza will be the one who will be assessing the opportunities for Toronto interests o ered up in the approximately $1 Billion the governments of Italy and Basilicata will be spending on road, rail and tourism infrastructure to make Matera more accessible, o ered Dan Montesano. “Toronto’s business community has a lot to o er in these sectors and in the marketing fi eld associated with all three”, he said.
“I think that when the Economic Development Committee sees that the European Union and Matera will be spending $50 million on the development and promotion of the cultural industries for 2019, it will want to come up with a proposal to help Toronto’s creative arts community explore the potential”, added Pat Tremamunno.
Frank Miele is already putting together a plan to engage the corporate sector in formulating “a business plan” to accompany what the Basilicata Committee has presented to date. Moreover, they extended a “formal invitation” to Mayor Tory to attend the Annual Gala held by the Basilicata Society, later this Fall, at which a delegation of Basilicata o cials will be in attendance.
Corriere Canadese will be reaching out to Mayor Tory for his response.