McNaughton to Liberals: Enough Talk, Time For Action On Jobs
08 June 2012
“In other words, the excess of panels might be on the long list of things the Liberals aren’t quite sure what to do about. Perhaps they could strike a panel to help them figure it out.”
- Adam Radwanski, The Globe and Mail, May 20, 2012
QUEEN’S PARK – Ontario’s jobless rate is stuck at an unacceptably high 7.8 per cent for May – and all the government can do is talk about setting up yet another advisory panel to think about job creation, PC Economic Development and Innovation Critic Monte McNaughton said today.
McNaughton’s comments follow the release of new StatsCan numbers for the previous month showing Ontario lost over 31,000 full-time jobs over the period – making May the 65th consecutive month that Ontario has lagged Canada in job creation. The rest of the country gained more than 32,000 full-time jobs.
“Nearly 600,000 Ontarians woke up this morning with nothing to do – and all this government can say is that today it is ‘announcing the next steps in the creation’ of a talking shop to discuss this disaster,” McNaughton said, quoting from a Liberal press release.
“The time for talk is over. Urgent action must be taken to get our fiscal house in order and get our economic fundamentals right: things like less spending and debt, lower taxes on job creators, more affordable energy and an end to needless regulation.”
These, McNaughton said, are the basics that must be addressed to reduce the size and cost of government and create more dynamism in the economy for private sector job creation: “Tim Hudak and the Ontario PC Caucus believe in action, not more talking shops,” McNaughton said. “That’s why for months now we have tabled positive, pro-growth ideas for reducing the size and cost of government and creating the conditions for economic growth and opportunity.”
Specifically, McNaughton referenced his Party’s proposed public sector wage freeze legislation to save $2 billion annually, its recent Paths to Prosperity white paper on reining in electricity costs, competition for the delivery of government services, public sector salary arbitration reform and a plan to create 200,000 new skilled trades jobs – to name a few.
“All because Ontario is on the wrong path toward a $30 billion deficit, a $411 billion debt and the risk of more credit downgrades and even higher debt servicing costs,” McNaughton said.
Last month the Economic Development Minister held a news conference to announce the name of his jobs panel, McNaughton noted. “Today he’s announcing ‘next steps’ in putting it together, in the wake of a budget that made things worse by cancelling tax relief for job creators.
“At this rate, next month he might get around to announcing some meeting dates. Struggling Ontarians deserve better than this perpetual dithering and delay.”