POLITICS
06/24/2014 05:35 EDT | Updated 06/24/2014 05:59 EDT

Kathleen Wynne Ignores Calls To Trim Size Of Cabinet

CP

Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne was evidently unmoved by arguments made in this month's election to trim the size of her cabinet.

On Tuesday, Wynne unveiled a new team of 27 ministers (including herself). That's the same number she had behind her when the legislature was dissolved on May 2.

It also means nearly half of the 58 Liberal MPPs elected on June 12 now sit in cabinet. Ontario ministers earn $165,850 a year, almost $50,000 more than a typical member of provincial Parliament.

For the sake of comparison, Prime Minister Stephen Harper has a cabinet of 39 ministers (including himself).

Both outgoing Ontario PC Leader Tim Hudak (who will formally resign from the party's top job next month) and NDP Leader Andrea Horwath vowed to bring in a leaner executive team if they formed government.

Hudak, who pledged to eliminate 100,000 public sector jobs in his first term, said he would lead by example when it came to shrinking the size of government in order to slay the province's estimated deficit of $12.5 billion.

"I'm going to start right at the top," he told Maclean's in May. "I'll shrink the size of my cabinet down from 27 to 16."

Horwath, whose campaign focused largely on populist messages about eliminating waste, said she would cut cabinet by one-third if elected.

"The first jobs that are going to be lost (are) eight jobs around the cabinet table," she told The Toronto Star.

The NDP leader also promised to bring in a new "savings and accountability" minister tasked to find cuts of 0.5 per cent in spending — about $600 million a year on the province's $120-billion annual budget.

Yet, Ontario voters ultimately chose Wynne's vision for the future and rewarded her with a majority government.

The Ontario premier did reveal two big changes Tuesday, however.

Newcomer Mitzie Hunter was named the associate minister of finance, placed in charge of setting up a made-in-Ontario pension plan by 2017. Hunter will work under Finance Minister Charles Sousa.

And Dr. Eric Hoskins was named the new minister of health.

Check the gallery below to see how the size of Wynne's cabinet compares to other governments in the country.

How Big Are Cabinets Across Canada?

With files from The Canadian Press