Ontario Government Focused on Respect for Taxpayers as House Resumes for Spring Session
Legislative Agenda Focuses on Jobs, Fiscal Responsibility and Supporting Healthcare
The government of Ontario reconvened the 42nd Parliament today with a pledge to continue to deliver on its promises to respect the taxpayer and bring back accountability and trust.
"We promised the people of Ontario that we would fight to reduce the deficit, cut red tape, promote job creation and make government more efficient," said Government House Leader and Minister of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade, Todd Smith. "Our work is just beginning. Through the upcoming busy legislative agenda, we will continue to fight to make life easier for hard-working families."
The spring session will focus on three main priorities:
- Open Ontario for Business to Create a Pro-Jobs Environment: connecting more workers to good, local jobs while encouraging job creation, investment and trade both inside and outside of Canada.
- Balancing the Budget Responsibly: finding efficiencies and streamlining services by making sure all programs and services are relevant and effective.
- Building the Health Care System of the Future: identifying new ways to use technology more effectively, and committing to new models of collaboration and patient care.
In its first legislative session, the government brought forward major pieces of legislation including:
- One of the most generous Ontario tax cuts for low-income workers in a generation, the Low-income Individuals and Families (LIFT) Credit.
- Elimination of the carbon tax through the Cap and Trade Cancellation Act to help reduce gas prices and remove a costly burden on businesses.
- Removing job-killing burdens and modernizing the apprenticeship and skilled trades system with the introduction of the Making Ontario Open for Business Act.
- Protecting energy consumers and return planning authority to municipalities by repealing the Green Energy Act.
- In 2018, the government saved $3.2 billion by finding efficiencies without compromising front-line services.
- The government has already reduced the deficit by $0.5 billion through reduced spending. It has been further reduced by strong economic growth. Ontario is projecting a $13.5 billion deficit in 2018-19.
- Ontario has the highest subnational debt of any jurisdiction in the world. The government has taken steps to restore trust and accountability to the Province’s finances, including releasing a line-by-line review of spending and launching a new Audit and Accountability Committee.