Province Plans Path to Balanced Books in 2019 Budget

Ontario's Tories don't plan to balance books until after election

Ontario's Tories don't plan to balance books until after election

"Unless you're a Friend of Ford - or your goal in life is to drink buck-a-beers at tailgate parties - there's nothing for you in this budget", said Thomas. They say they inherited a $15 billion deficit from the previous Liberal government that has since been cut to $11.7 billion. Fedeli says they expected to further reduce it by almost $1.5 billion to $10.3 billion.

Something the budget did not include: a gas tax increase. "This represents the first comprehensive change to Ontario's fiscal planning legislation in 15 years".

"The only new spending can be attributed to different accounting methods between the Tories and their predecessors", she said. "Our plan will make every dollar count so we can continue to invest in the critical programs like health care, education, and other services that the people of Ontario rely upon each and every day while protecting frontline workers". "That is why our government is taking steps to modernize the way we sell, distribute and consume alcohol in Ontario". That means the PCs are banking on getting all the teachers' unions in Ontario (whose contracts all expire this summer) to accept wage freezes, or have them imposed. "The challenges of an aging population and older schools are real and will require even further investment".

One new goodie is a child-care tax credit, providing up to $6,000 per child under seven and up to $3,750 per child between seven and 16, on a sliding scale for families earning less than $150,000 annually.

"We trust people to make the right decisions", he said.

The government is also introducing a child-care tax credit and promising to create 30,000 child-care spaces over five years.

"This change will level the playing field for Ontario casinos and enable them to compete more effectively with those in the United States", the budget states. They also do restaurant inspection and keep track of immunizations.

A further $510 million in annual savings are expected through streamlined administration and simplified reporting in programs such as income support, child care, affordable housing and homelessness prevention programs, the budget said.

There are 35 health units across the province which will be consolidate into 10.

Fedeli laid out the government's previously announced education plan, including back-to-basics math, renewed focus on STEM, skilled trades and financial literacy.

However, there was also a small group of students who chose to protest the protest as a few of them drove by with "Go Doug Ford" and "I (heart shape) Doug Ford" etched in the dirt on the side of their vehicles while honking their horns at the students.

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Fedeli claimed no teacher is being fired under their new plan, "despite what their opponents often claim".

Through partnerships with the private sector, the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corp.

Ontario, pre-Doug Ford, also had the lowest per-capita revenues of any province. It will also create a digital portal for apprenticeship opportunities.

About 28,000 children are served through the program, but ministry officials refused to say how many are waiting.

And as the next election comes into view, the temptation to spend a lot more - or lure voters with big tax cuts - will only grow.

Later this spring, the Conservatives intend to release a "Housing Supply Action Plan", with the promise of cutting development costs and making it easier to build rental housing. The province will also allow the introduction of "happy hour" rules for bars similar to those in other provinces.

How do they claim that?

It also proposes to review the possible sale of government buildings the government considers no longer useful. The government spent $500,000 on a consultation on branding, but has a new contract for licence plate production that saves $4 million.

Commercial plates will carry Premier Doug Ford's election slogan: "open for business". It said that current prohibitions on the activity in the province is sending revenue to so-called "grey market" websites.

"We've been talking about alcohol for the duration of this government", he said. "Ontario's rules and regulations for combative sports, such as MMA, boxing and kickboxing are out-of-date", said Fedeli.

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