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PostPosted: Mon Mar 26, 2018 9:10 pm    Post subject: Goldstein: The Liberal's Legacy in Ontario Reply with quote

This column does a rundown of the Liberal financial record over the whole 15 years of their rule, and pronounces the historical verdict before they are even gone.

GOLDSTEIN: How Wynne’s debt bomb derailed Ontario’s economy
Lorrie Goldstein
March 24, 2018

Premier Kathleen Wynne treats her government’s massive debt as if she’s won the lottery.

To her, runaway debt is a force for good, helping her to treat Ontarians “fairly,” with no economic consequences.

But the premier’s belief she can spend Ontario rich is nonsense.

In reality, imposing decades of economic hardship on present and future generations of Ontarians by saddling them with record levels of debt, is the true legacy of 15 years of Liberal rule in Ontario, going back to Dalton McGuinty’s election as premier in 2003.

Their reckless spending has put us on a treadmill of higher taxes, rising debt and deteriorating public services. Here’s why:

Since 2003, the Liberals have doubled government spending from $71 billion to $141 billion annually, while increasing provincial debt by 125%, from $138.8 billion to $311.9 billion, making Ontario the world’s most indebted sub-sovereign borrower.

Even the Liberals concede a healthy debt-to-Gross Domestic Product ratio for Ontario — a key indicator of economic health — would be 27%, which is what the Liberals inherited from the previous Progressive Conservative government in 2003.

By contrast, in their 15 years in power, they’ve increased the debt-to-GDP ratio to 37.5%, and rising, while lacking a credible plan to reduce it to 27%, according to the Legislature’s independent, non-partisan Financial Accountability Office.

And that was before Finance Minister Charles Sousa announced that in Wednesday’s budget, the Liberals will abandon the commitment they made a year ago to balance the province’s books in 2018-19 and 2019-20, after claiming they balanced them in 2017-18 following almost a decade of deficits.

But the Auditor General and Financial Accountability Office say that for the 2017-18 fiscal year, the Liberals are actually running a deficit of $4 billion to $4.5 billion, hidden by accounting tricks.

Auditor General Bonnie Lysyk says the Wynne Liberals have improperly claimed a $12.4 billion surplus in two public sector pension plans as an asset, because they cannot access these funds without the permission of the employees’ unions.

They have also, she says, improperly kept the $39.4 billion required to fund Wynne’s Fair Hydro Plan — temporarily reducing electricity rates by 25% before sending them skyrocketing — off the province’s books, by transferring the debt to Ontario Power Generation, meaning electricity consumers will have to pay up to $4 billion extra in unnecessary interest costs.

Even using Wynne’s numbers, the Liberals in 2018-19 will spend $12 billion of taxpayers’ money — $1 billion a month — just paying interest on the province’s $311.9 billion debt.
[Emphasis added]

In the four years Wynne has been premier, the Liberals have spent $44.5 billion paying interest on debt.

Not one penny of that — the government’s fourth-largest annual expenditure after health, education and social services — has gone towards improving public services, reducing debt, or lowering taxes.

All this during a period of historically low interest rates, when the Liberals should have been gradually reducing debt, especially now given their claim Ontario’s economy is booming.

Small wonder vital public services like health care are deteriorating, even as Wynne plunges the province further into debt to pay for her election promises, leading up to the June 7 vote.

Meanwhile, the Liberals are simultaneously raising the cost of living for Ontarians by $1.8 billion annually, through Wynne’s ill-conceived cap-and-trade carbon pricing scheme.[Emphasis added]

The Liberals have both undermined Ontario’s economy and left the province in dire financial straits when the next recession hits, as it inevitably will.

As the Fraser Institute recently reported, during the “lost decade” of reckless Liberal spending from 2007 to 2016 — during which all provinces had to cope with the aftermath of the 2008 global recession — Ontario fell to seventh place among Canada’s 10 provinces in GDP growth per person; eighth in annual private-sector job growth; ninth in accumulated debt per person and tenth and last in median household income growth.[Emphasis added]

Righting the ship will require a fiscal discipline Wynne is incapable of delivering.


A rough tally means we might be far deeper in debt than the mere $4.6 billion they are reporting. This government has been so incredibly bad for Ontario ... that is worth mentionng to those from other provinces -- the cental figures that ran McGuinty's administration moved to Ottawa and are now hold several key positions in the Federal administration.

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 27, 2018 8:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

( the liberals just don't get it , read this crazy article from the CBC on the sunshine list , Michael Coteau a liberal cabinet minister talks about how upset he is about there being a lack of diversity among so called sunshine list earners .

but the average person is no fixated on the race of sunshine list earners , there upset so much money is going to salaries and not front line government services . adding some Chinese and blacks to the sunshine list is not going to solve the root problem this government has with out of control spending )

Sunshine List so white: Minorities almost invisible among Ontario's best-paid public servants

Research by CBC News reveals lack of racial, gender diversity among top executives on Sunshine List

Amara McLaughlin, Mike Crawley · CBC News · Posted: Mar 27, 2018 5:00 AM ET | Last Updated: 4 hours ago

Analysis by CBC Toronto shows the top 10 highest-paid public-sector employees of 2017 were all visibly white and predominately male. (LinkedIn)

Call it the Sunshine List So White and Male.

According to research done by CBC News, minorities are almost invisible among Ontario's best-paid public servants, showing a lack of racial and gender diversity among the annual Sunshine List's top earners.

The top 25 highest-paid public-sector employees of 2017 are all visibly white and only four women round out the list.

Of the highest paid people, Jill Pepall is the only woman to crack the top 10. She is the executive vice-president and chief executive officer of the Ontario Public Service Pension Board and earned $721,224.22 last year.

The other three women in the top 25 include:
•Maureen Jensen, chair and CEO of the Ontario Securities Commission: $708,963.41.
•Catherine Zahn, president and CEO of the Centre For Addiction and Mental Health: $673,541.20
•Michelle Diemanuele, president and CEO of Trillium Health Partners: $660,450.07

Meanwhile, ranked 33rd on the list, Altaf Stationwala, president and CEO of Mackenzie Health, was the first visible minority person among the highest earners with a salary of $540,715.04.

"When we look at public and private corporations we don't see [diversity] reflected in the actual numbers," said Michael Coteau, the minister responsible for anti-racism.

Coteau is responsible for the province's three-year anti-racism strategy, which was unveiled in March 2017, to combat systemic racism in education, justice and child welfare.

The number of people from visible minority groups in Ontario is expected to grow in the next decade and the province's public service needs to reflect this diversity, explains Michael Coteau, the minister responsible for anti-racism. (CBC)

Visible minority groups make up 29.3 per cent of Ontario's population, data from Canada's 2016 census shows. This number is expected to grow "drastically" in the next 15 years, says Coteau, and the province's public servants need to reflect this diversity.

"We need to make sure that we're maximizing that potential in Ontario and looking for ways to ensure that we utilize the talent pool that's here by combating systemic racism and looking for ways to open up doors and remove barriers," he told CBC Toronto.

"Within the government of Ontario, I know that the secretary of cabinets has been looking at ways to recruit people into senior positions that traditionally, in the past, did not get into Ontario public service."

But Treasury Board President Eleanor McMahon highlights that the provincial government doesn't possess the power to enforce diversity throughout the public sector, which includes municipalities, school boards, hospitals, universities, colleges, and many charities.

"The hiring of people from Ontario's public sectors is outside our purview and those are generally speaking very technical jobs, of which there is a smaller pool of labour," said McMahon.

Coteau adds, however, that having more visible minorities within government will eventually spread to the public sector.

"If you want to start advocating for change, you got to start in government first to ensure there you're actually modelling what the world should look like," he said.

From there, he hopes more young leaders will be inspired to train or seek education that will lead them into these public service roles.

"I think the Ontario public service is going through a transformation where it's recognizing that it needs to, for example, bring people in early who they identify as potential leaders."

But the lack of diversity among the province's best-paid public servants isn't a quick fix, notes McMahon, because of low turnover rates within these top positions.

"It's important to remember again that many of the people that are there now are going to be there for the foreseeable future and we can't do much about those folks that are there," she said.

This is why diverse talent needs to be fostered early in order to give these individuals opportunities to climb the ladder of public service, explained Couteau.

"It's more about encouraging and working with potential leaders and getting them into senior positions where they can be seen as mentors and can attract potential candidates," he said.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 27, 2018 9:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

You are so-oo right, RCO ... they just have no clue. They look at the sunshine list and ask Why are there so few women on here? Why so few minorities? whereas the normal human being is stunned that the list is so long.

Didja know that the Ontario government hires preferentially from the equity list? That's another way of saying, on the basis of race and sex. I think TC got his job because mental patients are also on the list.
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Goldstein: The Liberal's Legacy in Ontario

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