Ontario budget also guts Northern Development and Mines spending by $70 million, says Vic Fedeli
TORONTO – The Conservative’s finance critic has slammed the Ontario budget, saying it proves the governing Liberals have given up on Northern Ontario. Vic Fedeli said the budget, released on Thursday, includes a $70-million cut to Northern Development and Mines and the $1 billion promised for Ring of Fire infrastructure has mysteriously disappeared.
“The Ministry helps to establish mining operations all over Northern Ontario, creating good well-paying jobs that help to grow our Northern economy — obviously not a concern of this government,” Fedeli said.
“It came as a serious shock to see that this year’s budget removed all mention of the Ring of Fire. After three years of promises the Wynne government has completely abandoned this critical mining project,” Fedeli said.
The Opposition Conservatives were also critical of Liberal claims of having balanced the budget, a first in a decade in Ontario, saying the government in fact delivered a $5-billion operational deficit when factoring in $2 billion pulled from cap and trade, $500 million in pension assets, $1.5 billion from federal transfer payments and $1 billion in monies raised through the sale of Hydro One shares.
Leader Patrick Brown said the Liberals have doubled the provincial debt since taking office and have no plan to pay it down. “Whether it’s hydro, health care, or housing, this budget is a patchwork attempt by a desperate government to fix the mess they created,” said Brown, a little more than a year before he’ll lead the Conservatives into his first election as party head.
“But a Liberal is a Liberal. If they win, they’ll go back to their old ways, and raise your taxes, cut your health care, and hike your hydro rates once again.
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