Students will get a financial boost, while smokers, drinkers and drivers will feel the pinch from the Ontario budget.
The government says university and college will soon be free for students from low-income families.Prices on wine, tobacco, gasoline and heating for most homeowners will be going up.
GO Transit will extend its rail operations beyond Oshawa and into Bowmanville, although no timeline was given.
Finance Minister Charles Sousa says the Liberal government is on track to eliminate a 5.7-billion-dollar deficit in the next fiscal year largely thanks to managing program spending and fighting the underground economy.
But revenue from the partial sale of Hydro One and 1.9 billion dollars expected from a new carbon pricing system are major factors to getting into the black.
The opposition leaders says the budget will make life less affordable for Ontarians.Progressive Conservative Leader Patrick Brown says he worries the government is taking advantage of the public wanting to combat climate change and the cap and trade plan is simply a revenue grab.And N-D-P Leader Andrea Horwath says it will hurt seniors, and there was no warning for seniors budgeting on fixed incomes who will be facing huge new costs.
Sousa defended increased costs from cap and trade, saying that letting the low-carbon economy go by will cost even more.
The Ontario Hospital Association is calling the new budget positive news for hospitals and the health care system.
It says health-care investment in the budget will go to support frontline care and help to keep wait times low, maintain access to elective surgery and ensure key health programs are maintained.
O-H-A president Anthony Dale says hospitals have developed strong partnerships with government and other providers in an effort to create a better experience for patients.
Dale says the measures announced in the budget will help to ensure stability within Ontario’s health care system during the upcoming period of health system restructuring.
(The Canadian Press)