A report from the Ontario Alternative Budget Working Group released today challenges the key assumption underlying the Eves Government's claim that the province is on the brink of another fiscal crisis. The report analyzes the state of Ontario's budget for 2002-3 in light of the oft-repeated claim that the province faces a budget shortfall or "problem" of between $3 billion and $5 billion in fiscal year 2002-3. It shows that, based on the Governments own current projections, the Conservatives can anticipate a budget surplus of $600 million for 2002-3.
Ontario Alternative Budget
The Ontario government's operating grants to the province's universities, allowing for inflation and enrolment growth, declined by $348 million, or 17%, between 1995-96 and 2000-01, according to a study--University Funding Cuts: Shortchanging Ontario Students--released today by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives. The study, by researchers Hugh Mackenzie and Mark Rosenfeld, found that the government's reliance on tuition fee increases to offset its funding shortfall has imposed onerous hardships on many students.
Declining Levels of Support Since the election of the Conservative Government in 1995, university finance has been radically undermined. Measured on a consistent basis, and allowing for inflation and enrolment growth, Ontario's operating support for universities declined by $348 million, or 17%, between 1995-6 and 2000-1.
The claim that health spending in Ontario is out of control has no factual basis, according to a study released today by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives' Ontario Alternative Budget Project. The research paper, entitled "Ontario's Health Spending: Bleeding Our Hospitals," contains several important findings:
TORONTO---The 4.8 million women, men and children living in rental housing in Ontario remain mired in the province's worst housing crisis in more than a decade. But the bad news for millions of renter households is a virtual goldmine for investors and their financial advisors, including a former assistant deputy provincial housing minister. The province's over-heated rental market is showering them with big returns even as tenants struggle to make their monthly rent. They are buying up rental buildings with moderate rents in Toronto, Mississauga, Burlington, St.
TORONTO--Ontario's economic recovery gives Premier Ernie Eves and his Finance Minister Janet Ecker the fiscal room to make good on the Throne Speech promises of public services improvements, Ontario Alternative Budget Working Group Co-Chair says. In the OAB's annual pre-budget fiscal update, Hugh Mackenzie estimates that, based on recent provincial forecast updates by Canada's five largest chartered banks, Ontario can increase public services spending by $2 billion in 2002-3 without risk of a deficit.