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• Fall economic statement includes a new tax credit for low-income workers and an end to subsidies for political parties
• Government has achieved savings of $3.2 billion since taking office

Taxpayers Federation praises fall economic statement for focus on taxpayers, but wants timeline for

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By —— Bio and Archives November 16, 2018

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Taxpayers Federation praises fall economic statement for focus on taxpayers, but wants timeline for deficit elimination
TORONTO, ON: The Canadian Taxpayers Federation (CTF) is praising the Ontario Fall Economic Statement for focusing on respect for taxpayers, but remains concerned about the province’s large deficit.

“There is a lot of great news for taxpayers in today’s baby budget,” said CTF Ontario Director, Christine Van Geyn. “Low-income workers across Ontario will benefit from the tax cut announced today, which will save individual workers up to $850 per year. Letting the 1.1 million low-income workers in Ontario keep the income they earn is the right thing to do.”

In addition to tax cuts for low income workers, some significant policy changes in this year’s Fall Economic Statement are a slightly reduced deficit, transparency measures related to a federally imposed carbon tax, expanded hours for alcohol sales across the province, reversing recent tax increases imposed by the previous government, including the tax increase to beer and a small business tax increase, and eliminating the taxpayer subsidy for political parties.

The government is also undertaking a number of initiatives to reduce spending, including freezing public sector executive compensation increases, reforms to OHIP+, restrictions on ministry discretionary spending, and cancelling certain regional infrastructure projects. The total savings to date is $3.2 billion.

“We’re pleased that the government is showing some spending restraint – this has been missing for far too long,” continued Van Geyn. “The end of taxpayer subsidies for political parties is also the right thing to do. Taxpayers should never be forced pay for political mudslinging attack ads or junk mail flyers.”

However, while there is a focus on the importance of deficit and debt reduction, the fall economic statement does not outline a timeline for a balanced budget.         

“We are happy to see that this government seems to understand the problems associated with massive repeated deficits, and that they’ve already made $500 million in progress. But today’s baby budget did not include a timeline for deficit elimination. Taxpayers should continue to insist the details for this plan be released with the 2019 budget. If the Ford government is serious about deficit elimination, taxpayers need action within this term,” concluded Van Geyn.

The government bragged on the first page of the document that they saved $11,000 on the fall economic statement this year by printing fewer copies and not publishing a glossy booklet with the minister’s remarks like the previous government did.

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Canadian Taxpayers Federation