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Ontario Budget 2019: What you need to know about today's announcement

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DH Toronto Staff Apr 11, 2019 2:58 pm

The 2019 Ontario Budget was tabled this afternoon by Doug Ford’s government.

The Ontario PCs said the budget will include no new taxes and will allow the government to provide a “projected $26 billion in much-needed relief to individuals, families and businesses over six years, and eliminate the deficit.”

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In a statement, Ford said that the province has sent “a clear message to the world that Ontario is open for business. While there is a lot of work left to do, we’re off to a great start.”

Here are some highlights from today’s announcement.

Ford Government predicts provincial surplus within 5 years

The Ford government says Ontario is on track to having a provincial surplus by the year 2023-2024.

The provincial government says it is forecasting a deficit of $11.7 billion in 2018-19. That figure represents a $3.3 billion improvement from the $15 billion that was left behind by the previous government, according to its “Big Fiscal” predictions outlined in the document.

Read more here.

‘Happy Hour’ is coming back to Ontario

It was announced in Ontario Budget 2019 that there will be changes to the current rules around ‘Happy Hour’ advertising.

The province will also introduce legislation that, if passed, would allow municipalities to set rules about where alcohol can be consumed in public areas, like parks.

And related to public drinking, sports fans will be able to drink alcohol during tailgating parties at eligible sporting events. Plus, casinos will also be allowed to advertise complimentary alcohol to patrons.

Read more here.

First look at new provincial licence plates

‘A Place to Grow’ is now the official slogan for the new blue licence plates in the province.

Read more (and see it) here.

All 15 locations of proposed Ontario Line revealed

On Wednesday, the government announced it is making the single largest capital contribution to new subway builds and extensions in Ontario’s history.

It said it is committing $11.2 billion of the total estimated $28.5 billion cost to support four rapid transit projects in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA), these include the Yonge North Subway Extension, the Scarborough Subway Extension, the Eglinton Crosstown West Extension, and a new subway, the Ontario Line.

The proposed line shows 15 stops spanning from Ontario Place to the Ontario Science Centre.

The stops include: Ontario Place, King and Bathurst, Queen and Spadina, Osgoode, Queen, Sherbourne, Sumach, East Harbour, Leslieville, Gerrard, Pape, Coburn, Thorncliffe Park, Flemingdon Park, and Ontario Science Centre.

Read more (and see it) here.

Ford Government to invest more than $4 billion in health care

The budget builds on the provincial government’s ongoing efforts to end, what they call, “hallway health care” by accelerating the development of 30,000 long-term care beds and delivering on mental health and addictions support.

Additionally, the budget includes a number of measures that will help improve the quality of life for Ontario seniors, which includes a new dental program.

Read more here.

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