Hudak: Time for Straight Talk on Jobs and Our Economy
19 July 2012
WATERDOWN – Better days are ahead for Ontario, but only if we get our fiscal house in order and our economic fundamentals back in line, Ontario PC Leader Tim Hudak said today.
Hudak made the comments during a For Jobs and Our Economy Town Hall hosted by the Flamborough Chamber of Commerce. Hudak called for frank discussion about Ontario’s economic troubles like the ongoing jobs crisis. Over the last year, Hamilton lost 2,500 jobs and its unemployment increased to 7.4 per cent – above the national average. What’s more, the province has lost 300,000 manufacturing jobs, while the public sector has gained the same number. As evidence, Hamilton’s Siemens AG plant closed its doors and moved to North Carolina resulting in 500 jobs lost.
The fact is, Ontario is in a jam, Hudak said. “The money has run out. It’s time to talk to people like adults about our situation. We need policies that will kick-start growth and create good, paying, private-sector jobs.”
The number one thing we can do for job creation is get our fiscal house in order, Hudak continued: “That will tell businesses, manufacturers and global investors that Ontario can afford the things they need to invest, expand and achieve success, like lower taxes and better infrastructure.
“We must take urgent action to rein in this government’s overspending. This calls for an integrated, comprehensive plan that gets the economic fundamentals right and puts us on a path toward balanced budgets, a more dynamic economy and job creation,” Hudak added.
The Ontario PC Caucus have tabled a number of ideas to achieve this including: affordable energy, tax relief, changing the attitude of government by welcoming job creators, not deterring them with regulations and red tape, and a bold revision of this province’s 1940s era labour laws that hamper our ability to compete as proposed in our Paths to Prosperity Flexible Labour Markets white paper,” Hudak added.” Other ideas include:
· Reining in spending with a mandatory public sector wage freeze and allowing businesses and private sector unions to compete for government contracts;
· Reducing the cost of doing business by lowering taxes and treating affordable energy as a cornerstone of economic growth; and
· Creating 200,000 jobs in the skilled trades by allowing employers to take on additional apprentices. This means more electricians, ironworkers and carpenters.
Hudak was joined by Halton MPP Ted Chudleigh who said “Ontario also has unrivalled competitive advantages like a skilled workforce, close proximity to international markets and proud family farms and a renowned agricultural sector – a staple of rural communities throughout the Golden Horseshoe.”
Building on that Hudak said a key advantage includes natural resources, like the Ring of Fire and the province’s role in developing the oil sands, which all lead to jobs, growth and new opportunities, especially for the manufacturing sector.
“This is my plan for jobs, growth and a more prosperous future. And today in Waterdown, and across Ontario, I want to hear what the people who actually pay the bills and create the jobs think about these ideas,” Hudak concluded.