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MPP Wilson Says Ontarians Can’t Afford Liberal Budget

(April 27, 2015) Simcoe-Grey MPP Jim Wilson is calling the budget more of the same from a government that has demonstrated that it is incapable of setting priorities, including a substantive plan to get Ontario back on firm economic footing and eliminate the deficit by 2017-18.

"I can't support this budget," said Wilson. "In the last few weeks, my colleagues and I laid out five key items to be included in the budget that would help make Ontarians better off. None of them were incorporated. In fact, in some areas, it is totally opposite."

The budget re-committed to both the implementation of the pension payroll tax and a pay-to-pollute carbon tax on everything. It contained no credible plan to reduce hydro rates or reduce the deficit. It ignored the Donner report by making further investments in bureaucracy rather than fixing Ontario's broken homecare system, including no funding for Matthews House Hospice—a promise they still have not fulfilled from last year's budget.

"There is nothing in the budget for the residents and businesses of Simcoe-Grey, but higher energy rates, new taxes and cuts to healthcare and education," continued Wilson. "Premier Kathleen Wynne doesn't seem to grasp the concept of responsible government."

The interest on the debt is the highest growth area in this budget – an increase of 5.7 per cent. This is more than the growth in any other sector, including health and education.

At the same time, Wilson noted that the Liberal budget reduces health care dollars . Federal transfers to the province for health care went up by $642 million, yet the health budget only increased by $598 million. That means the province is spending $54 million less on health care.

"Under the Liberals watch, the debt has ballooned from $139 billion to almost $300 billion in just over a decade," said Wilson. "And yet, they keep on spending without investing in the things that matter most. There is no funding in the budget for new badly needed hospitals in Alliston and Collingwood."

"Ontarians simply can't afford this budget or the direction the government is taking the province," concluded Wilson. "We need a government that will create jobs, not drive them away; a government that has makes health care Ontario's number one priority. I have no confidence in this budget or this government."

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