QUEEN’S PARK – This morning, the Financial Accountability Office (FAO) released its report on the economic and fiscal outlook of Ontario. The report concludes that there is a substantial risk that the Liberal Government will not balance the province’s books by 2017-18.
“The Financial Accountability Officer confirmed what the Ontario PC Caucus has been saying for nearly two years – the Liberal Government has a multi-billion dollar hole in their budget forecast,” stated Ontario PC Finance Critic Vic Fedeli in the Legislature. “The FAO anticipates a $3.5 billion deficit in 2017-18, the year the Liberal Government told Ontarians you’d balance the budget. In fact, the FAO said it could be $7.4 billion if the Government’s numbers are even more wrong than what we currently know.”
The FAO confirmed that economic growth in 2015 is expected to be significantly lower than projected, and will result in up to $1 billion less in revenue than the Wynne Liberals expected.
“It’s clear your repeated pattern of scandal and mismanagement is coming home to roost,” added Fedeli. “Ontario is at real risk of being stuck in perpetual deficit under your watch.”
It was also revealed that in order to balance the budget, the Liberal Government will have to reduce the deficit nearly four times the rate of the past four years.
“The Liberals have backed themselves into a corner and now have no way out but to increase taxes and cut even more services for Ontarians,” said Leader of the Official Opposition Patrick Brown.
The Leader of the Official Opposition also highlighted that if the government had not wasted $1.1 billion on gas plants, $2 billion on Smart Meters, $1 billion on eHealth and another $1 billion on Ornge, they could have avoided cutting essential services.
“It is clear the Wynne Liberals have no real plan to either balance the budget or grow our economy. As a result, they will cut funding to doctors, close needed schools, and raise hydro rates just to make up for their scandal, waste and mismanagement,” concluded Leader Patrick Brown.