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2014 Budget - Building Opportunity, Securing Our Future

2014 Ontario Budget Lays Out a Plan to Create Jobs and Grow the Economy, Build Modern Transit and Infrastructure, and Help Markham-Unionville Residents with their Retirement

The government is going forward with a 10-year plan for the economy, which is focused on investing in people, building modern infrastructure, and supporting a dynamic and innovative business climate.  These measures will foster opportunity and security and will ensure that Markham’s businesses and people are in the best position to create new jobs.  Moreover, the government will maintain its commitment to balance the budget by 2017-2018, by continuing to manage growth in spending, while ensuring that strategic investments in key public services that grow the economy are made.

“Our government recognizes that investing in public infrastructure is key to keep Ontario moving forward.  Strategic investments like the Highway 427 extension from Highway 7 to Major Mackenzie Drive, dedicated rapid transit bus lanes, and the Yonge North Subway expansion are investments in our future - addressing congestion and connecting commuters to job opportunities and valuable time with their families.”
Michael Chan, M.P.P., Markham-Unionville

Highlights of the plan include:


Although the current global economic climate has provided challenges, Ontario’s economy continues to grow and provide Markham citizens with opportunities to move into new careers and higher paying jobs.  The next steps the government will take include:

  • Establishing a new 10-year, $2.5 billion Jobs and Prosperity Fund that will improve Ontario’s ability to attract significant business investments, strengthen Ontario’s strategic sectors and support the province’s future economic growth.
  • Investing $295 million over two years for the Ontario Youth Jobs Strategy, which gives young people the opportunity to gain a foothold in the job market. Since September 2013, it has already helped over 10,000 young people gain work experience and find jobs.
  • Expanding the reach of Ontario’s exports to fast-growing emerging markets to help many small and medium-sized businesses grow and create jobs.
  • Providing new and expanded programs to help manage electricity costs for businesses. These include discounts for large, growing businesses and a tailored conservation program that helps small businesses and entrepreneurs ease their energy bills.

Transportation and Infrastructure

Ontario’s investments have helped make Markham one of the best places in the world to live, work and invest. Since 2003, Ontario has invested nearly $100 Billion in hospitals, schools, transportation, and infrastructure. These projects have supported an average of 100 000 jobs each year in construction related industries.   Examples of these projects in Markham include the expansion of the Markham-Stouffville Hospital and dedicated bus lanes along Highway 7.

The Province projects that the growth in population will result in a significant demand for infrastructure. In order to ensure this challenge is met, the 10 year plan proposes over $130 Billion in infrastructure investments, which is extremely important to Markham as it is one of the faster growing areas in the province. 

These investments will create jobs now; boost productivity and help the province grow and prosper.

Examples include:

  • Dedicating funding to make nearly $29 billion available over the next 10 years for transportation infrastructure, public transit and other priority infrastructure projects — $15 billion for the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area (GTHA) and nearly $14 billion for outside the GTHA.
    • In York Region this funding will go towards funding priority projects such as the Yonge North Subway Expansion.
  • Providing more than $11 billion over the next 10 years for elementary and secondary education infrastructure.
  • Planning to invest over $11.4 billion in major hospital expansion and redevelopment projects over the next 10 years. This is in addition to almost $700 million over the next10 years to address deferred maintenance in hospitals.

Securing Ontarians’ Retirement

Studies have shown that Canadians, especially those in the middle class, are not saving enough and need more money for their retirement. To help Ontarians be more secure in their retirement, the government is proposing a new mandatory provincial pension plan — the Ontario Retirement Pension Plan — that would be cost-effective, responsible and help Ontario workers build a more secure retirement future.

The plan would build on the Canada Pension Plan (CPP), and expand pension coverage initially to more than three million working Ontarians who currently rely on the CPP, Old Age Security and their own savings for retirement income.

Creating Opportunities and a Fair Ontario

The government is focused on investing in people today to provide fairness and security for all Ontarians. The 2014 Ontario Budget includes the following measures:

  • Continuing to reform the social assistance system which will improve income supports and reduce barriers to entering the workforce.
  • Raising the minimum wage to $11.00 per hour and proposing legislation to index it to inflation to help ensure that workers receive a decent wage.
  • Proposing to remove the Debt Retirement Charge cost from residential users’ electricity bills after December 31, 2015, to save a typical residential ratepayer about $70 per year.
  • Enhancing supports for adults with developmental disabilities and front-line workers in the community services sector.
  • Providing support for wage increases for personal support workers in the publicly funded home and community care sector, and front-line child care workers.
  • Increasing the Ontario Child Benefit by proposing to index it to inflation, to help all children reach their full potential.

Responsible Fiscal Management

The Province’s deficit for 2013–14 is now estimated to be $11.3 billion — a $0.4 billion improvement compared with the 2013 Budget forecast. This will mark the fifth year in a row that the Province will report a deficit lower than forecast.

Ontario will continue to invest in the things that matter to Ontarians and that will spur growth today and tomorrow.

Ontario’s performance against its fiscal targets to date is the result of a responsible and balanced approach to fiscal management, and the government’s commitment to ensure value for taxpayers’ money by making every dollar count. The government has managed spending in a way that has resulted in lower-than-forecast program expense in each of the last five years.

The government remains committed to balancing the budget by 2017–18.

The 2014 Ontario Budget lays out a plan for a strong Ontario, with more jobs, more opportunity and a more secure future. It will build opportunities right now and for our future.


  • Ontario’s economy continues to grow, contributing to new jobs and business opportunities. Since the recessionary low in June 2009, 459,500 net new jobs have been created in Ontario.
  • The pace of job creation in Ontario since June 2009 has been stronger than in most developed economies, including the United States, the average for member countries in the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, and the rest of Canada combined.
  • According to the Mowat Centre, the people of Ontario contributed $11 billion more to the federal government than they received in return in 2009–10 (the year with the latest available data). This represents about $850 per Ontarian.
  • As part of its commitment to making every dollar count, the government is now acting on over 80 per cent of the recommendations of the Commission on the Reform of Ontario’s Public Services (the Drummond Report).
  • The government is moving forward to unlock value from its interest in shares in General Motors and certain provincial real estate assets to reinvest in public infrastructure, and has established an Advisory Council on Government Assets to assess options for key provincial assets, with priority given to generating better returns and revenues for Ontarians.

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