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RSS FeedsOntario´s projected deficit drops to $9B
(The Star Toronto Raptors)


6 november 2019 22:47:05

Ontario´s projected deficit drops to $9B
(The Star Toronto Raptors)

The Ontario government is bleeding less red ink, but spending more money than ever before.Finance Minister Rod Phillips tabled the fall economic statement in the legislature on Wednesday and emphasized the provincial treasury is “back on sound footing.”“Today, I am pleased to report that this government is beating its deficit target by $1.3 billion this year,” Phillips told the house.That reduction in the shortfall — from a projected $10.3 billion to $9 billion — is coincidentally the same amount of new spending that was announced.“We are also investing an additional $1.3 billion in critical services in this fiscal update,” the treasurer said, noting spending is up $400 million in health care and $200 million on education since the April budget.That includes previous government climbdowns, such as the reversal of planned cuts to municipal public heath unit funding.Overall, spending is now projected to be $163.8 billion this year — $5.4 billion more than former premier Kathleen Wynne’s Liberals had planned to spend in 2018-19 before their defeat by the Progressive Conservatives.The improvement in the bottom line was fuelled by a growing economy that has helped the government take in $1.6 billion more than expected in corporate and personal income taxes.But deficits are still being forecast until 2023, one year after the next election. The Tories project the shortfall next year to be $6.7 billion, then $5.4 billion in 2021-22.That means Ontario’s debt — the largest subnational tally in the world — will balloon to $374.8 billion before the budget is balanced.In September, Phillips revised the 2018-19 deficit down from the Tories’ $15 billion to $7.4 billion, similar to the $6.7 billion Wynne had projected.Wednesday’s low-key update was a sharp contrast to last year’s fall economic statement. It was delivered by then-treasurer Vic Fedeli, who was later demoted by Premier ...

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