Elliott: Liberals Must Reduce Spending to Encourage Job Creation
10 August 2012
“The government’s fiscal plan may yet prove itself as full of holes as the Liberals’ own credibility when it comes to managing finances.”
- Moira MacDonald, Toronto Sun, August 4, 2012
QUEEN’S PARK – While the latest Statistics Canada data shows Ontario’s unemployment rate has gone up again to 7.9 per cent, the PCs continue to put their fresh, bold ideas on the table to create jobs. The last nine years of overspending have led to prolonged unemployment, stagnant wages and slow economic growth, Ontario PC Deputy Leader and Job Creation Task Force Chair Christine Elliott said today.
“The Liberals fail to understand the consequences of this reckless overspending. To grow the economy, the number one thing you need to do is rein in spending and reduce the size of government,” Elliott said. “Investors won’t come to a province where nine years of bad decisions have compounded the problem, resulting in a ballooning debt and multiple credit rating downgrades. Today’s Stats Can data show the government must take action to create jobs.”
Specifically, Elliott cited Ontario’s unemployment rate, which has been higher than the national average for 67 consecutive months now, according to the Statistics Canada data released today. Compared to the previous month, another 17,300 people were searching for work in July, as job creation is not keeping up with population growth.
“Close to 600,000 Ontarians are out of work. Earlier this week, Dalton McGuinty said the private sector is not ‘enthusiastic’ about taking on all the responsibility for creating new jobs,” Elliott stated. “Why, then, didn’t the 2012 budget have a plan to grow the economy? Businesses need sound economic fundamentals to help them grow, such as lower taxes, efficient regulation and affordable energy. The budget offered no new ideas to create jobs.”
Ontario needs a credible fiscal plan that will balance the budget by 2017 to encourage investment, Elliott continued. If the status quo remains, Ontario risks even greater job losses and a $411-billion debt by 2017 – triple the size of the debt in 2003. Wage growth will continue to stagnate, and the province will fall even farther behind the rest of Canada.
“Ontario’s manufacturing sector lost another 22,000 jobs last month. In total, that’s 300,000 jobs lost in the sector since this government came to power,” Elliott said. “Meanwhile, the public sector continues to grow, with another 1,200 jobs added last month. In total, this sector has gained 300,000 jobs since 2003, and the Liberals are failing to stand up to union leaders and freeze their members’ wages. Something has to change.”
To kick-start the province’s economy and rein in spending, the Ontario PCs have brought forward numerous proposals, from bold labour reforms to legislating a public sector wage freeze. Across Ontario, these proposals have gained public support.
“Tim Hudak and the Ontario PCs are the only ones who have bold and credible ideas for getting the government’s finances back in order,” said Elliott. “We’re the only ones who can shake the Liberals from their complacency, and help put Ontario’s economy back on track.”