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2014 Ontario Budget Passes in Legislature

Web posted on July 28, 2014

On July 24, 2014 the Ontario Legislature passed the Building Opportunity and Securing Our Future Act (Budget Measures), 2014, which lays out the government's plan to create opportunity and security for today and tomorrow.

"The 2014 Ontario Budget lays out a positive and progressive plan to build opportunity and secure our future while maintaining an unwavering commitment to eliminate the deficit and balance the budget by 2017-18. This strong plan will help create jobs and grow the economy by investing in modern transit and infrastructure and helping Ontarians retire securely." Charles Sousa, Minister of Finance.

It will make the necessary investments to move Ontario forward in the new global economy, build new public transit and roads, help ensure a more secure retirement, and eliminate the deficit by 2017-18.

The plan focuses on:
--> Building on Ontarians' skills to support a talented workforce, helping to create jobs, grow the economy and expand opportunities for workers. These measures include completing the rollout of Full-Day Kindergarten this fall, modernizing child care, investing in classroom technology, providing the 30% Off Ontario Tuition grant and extending the Ontario Youth Jobs Strategy.

--> Creating the Ontario Retirement Pension Plan to help working families build a more secure retirement. When combined with Canada Pension Plan payments, it will help provide the comfortable retirement they deserve.

--> Building modern infrastructure and transportation networks to help create jobs now, improve Ontario's productivity and support the jobs and growth of tomorrow. This investment includes more than $130 billion in infrastructure over the next 10 years.

--> Providing opportunities and build a fairer Ontario, because the province's success depends on the success of all people. Measures include continuing to reform the social assistance system, which will improve income supports and reduce barriers to entering the workforce.

--> Eliminating the deficit by 2017-18 by responsibly managing spending and investing strategically in new growth. With the help of the new President of the Treasury Board, Ontario will meet its target for a balanced budget and move towards pre-recession debt-to-GDP levels.

--> Ontario's 10-year, $2.5 billion Jobs and Prosperity Fund will improve Ontario's ability to attract significant business investments and support the province's future economic growth. Creating jobs and growing the economy by offering an internationally competitive and predictable corporate tax rate, and continuing to partner with Ontario businesses both at home and abroad.

--> New dedicated funds will make nearly $29 billion available over the next 10 years to build a seamless, province-wide transportation network by investing in highways, public transit, roads and bridges. The funds will be fairly and transparently divided by population, so that the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area will receive $15 billion and other regions of Ontario will receive nearly $14 billion.

--> The 2014 Budget includes a commitment of $1 billion for strategic transportation infrastructure in the Ring of Fire to help unlock the North's economic growth and jobs potential.

--> The province is making an investment of more than $11 billion in modernizing elementary and secondary schools over the next 10 years.

--> More than $11.4 billion is being invested in major hospital expansion and redevelopment projects over the next 10 years.

--> Taxpayer Protection Act amendments will allow the government to introduce a bill that would increase personal income tax on taxable incomes over $150,000, affecting the top two per cent of Ontario tax filers.

--> The Budget Bill made an amendment to the Legislative Assembly Act, which will continue the MPP pay freeze from April 1, 2014 until the budget is balanced.

--> The Budget Bill also included an amendment to the Electricity Act, 1998, to help ensure that Ontario's Feed-in Tariff program is in line with rulings of the World Trade Organization on domestic content requirements.

The 2014 Ontario Budget is the government's plan to invest in people, build modern infrastructure and support a dynamic and innovative business climate.