QUEEN’S PARK – The Liberal Government re-introduced its Budget earlier today. MPP McDonell highlighted how the spending promises contained in the Budget are likely to increase the debt burden on taxpayers.
“This is the same Budget that the Liberals used to trigger the election and shore up their support base” – MPP McDonell commented. “It is a political Budget, not a practical one. The Government is determined to ignore warnings from the financial and business community and pile on debt with no plan on how to repay it. Rating agencies have already warned us of a potential credit downgrade if the Budget is passed as originally drafted. A downgrade will cause our interest payments to rise. A one-percent increase in the interest rate charged on our debt will cost us $3 billion more per year, seriously endangering our ability to pay for essential services such as healthcare, education and support services for vulnerable Ontarians.”
The Budget will be debated over the course of the next week in the Legislature.
“It is imperative to tackle the Province’s decreasing competitiveness” – MPP McDonell added. “This Budget does not achieve that objective. It is full of spending promises without any commitment to tackling the growing debt, or giving any relief to Ontarians who are paying outrageous hydro rates, experiencing cuts to their healthcare coverage or waiting for a long-term care bed, a family physician or support services for developmentally challenged or disabled relatives. Sensient Biopharma and Savory Flavors in Cornwall is another casualty of the uncompetitive cost of doing business in Ontario. Sensient will be closing their doors this winter and as many as 50 people will be out of work. The Government is putting partisan interests above those of the people of Ontario, and I will not support this course of action”.
-MPP Jim McDonell
The Ontario Government’s flawed May 1, 2014 budget reintroduced on July 14 should be amended for several reasons.
The budget fails to change the Liberal Government’s policies on job creation which rely on corporate tax cuts and loopholes and no- strings- attached corporate giveaways. The Ontario NDP would reward businesses that create jobs and that invest in buildings, machinery, and equipment with tax credits.
The Liberal Government budget has no plans to protect frontline services in our hospitals or to provide more long-term care beds in the province.
Nor does the budget have plans to make life more affordable for everyday Ontarians such as reducing hydro bills, investing in more child care spaces, and freezing post-secondary education tuition fees.
We are still waiting for the establishment of the Financial Accountablity Office which was promised by the Wynne Government in last year’s Ontario budget. I also hope that the Liberal government in the interests of the agricultural industry in Eastern Ontario will keep the Kemptville and Alfred Agricultural Colleges and their agricultural programs open.
The budget does not detail how the Liberal Government will balance the Ontario budget by 2017-18. Will the Liberals revert to their usual strategy of campaign from the left and govern from the right with major cuts to public services and jobs? I am also concerned about potential Liberal Government plans to sell off public assets such as LCBO, Hydro One and Ontario Power Generation in order to balance the budget.
In a majority government situation, it is important to have a strong, progressive opposition in the legislature to hold the government accountable for its promises and actions. I hope that the Liberal government will recognize that it won its majority in the Ontario legislature with the support of only 38.7% of the Ontarians who voted in the Ontario election on June 12. The people of Ontario want our MPPs to work in the Ontario legislature to help create good jobs, improve public healthcare, make life more affordable, and reduce poverty.
SDSG Provincial NDP association.