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Hardly a week goes by without this thorny issue being disputed between federal and provincial governments - even now that the budget has been tabled. The simple solution is that health costs should be shared, 50-50. But this solution is far from simple and very misleading.
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Ontario, as with many governments, is lucky its debt interest payments are not substantially higher given its almost doubled debt. That has everything to do with historically low interest rates. But luck is not a long-term strategy for governments -- at least not ones that prefer prudence over accidental fiscal offerings.
Instead of demanding more money from the federal government, Ontario could a) cut provincial spending or b) reform everything from labour laws to regulation to tax policy and electricity policy, to unleash the economy and thus produce more at-home tax revenue or c) both. Ontario should not expect continued billions in annual equalization payments. While the exact decline in equalization is unknown -- it depends on how badly the resource economies and their provincial treasuries are hit -- Ontario should face reality and act accordingly.
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TORONTO - The federal government says Ontario will receive an additional $1.25 billion in transfers from Ottawa next year.Federal Finance Minister Joe Oliver says the province will receive more than $...
From the fur trade to fisheries and forests, Canada was built on the toil and sweat of those who wanted to prosper. But these days, it's harder to create opportunity. And sometimes, government is to blame. The latest example comes from Nova Scotia.
Bob Rae and Kathleen Wynne are hardly the only (former and current) politicians to engage in storytelling. Politicians of every partisan stripe do the same thing. But while stories are useful and guide us in a variety of beneficial ways, the rational side of human nature should revisit tales now and then, especially political ones. That leads to better, smarter government. Ontario is no exception.
Equalization is the federal government program ostensibly designed to help provinces provide roughly equal government services. Last year, Ottawa transferred $15.4 billion in equalization payments to six "poor" provinces, known as "have-nots." Ontario's entry into the equalization program back in 2009/10 -- think of a big sumo wrestler at a soup kitchen--resulted in a massive shift in dependency in Canada, and that portends future divisive debates. Now, 24.7 million people, or 71 per cent of the population live in a province that receives an equalization cheque from the federal government. This is a problem.
The new head of Quebec’s oil and gas lobby has compared Quebec to a social assistance recipient in a commentary criticizing the way transfer funds are meted out to provinces. Michael Binnion, head of...
Live in Ontario? You may be getting ripped off by the federal government. According to a new report from the Mowat Centre, Ontario contributes $11 billion more annually to the federal government than...
OTTAWA - Ottawa's cost-cutting measures have put it on a sound fiscal track for the future, but the provinces are left holding the bag, says Canada's budget watchdog.Parliamentary Budget Officer Kevin...
MONTREAL - A senior official with Quebec's massive pension-fund manager is suggesting a Canadian-style solution to help dig the European Union out of its deep financial crisis: an equalization system....