The following is a statement from Ontario PC Finance Critic Vic Fedeli regarding today’s release of a new mandate letter to Minister of Finance, Charles Sousa:
“I was disappointed to read that Minister Sousa’s new mandate letter included nothing to address the woeful financial track record of the Wynne Government.
“It fails to mention that the province’s net debt is set to rise by over $50 billion by 2020-21 to a record $350 billion and that Ontario will continue to be the largest subnational borrower on the planet.
“It fails to mention what the Financial Accountability Officer has confirmed – the government is using one-time money from asset sales, contingency funds and tax increases to artificially balance the budget in an election year, with Ontario then plunging back into structural deficits from 2018-19 to 2020-21.
“It fails to mention that the Wynne government’s unsuccessful ORPP scheme cost Ontario taxpayers $70-million and delivered $0 in retirement security benefits.
“On auto insurance rates, it’s clear that the Wynne government’s ‘stretch goal’ of reducing rates by 15 per cent has turned into a failed goal. In fact, the Financial Services Commission of Ontario has confirmed that auto insurance rates actually increased in the second quarter of 2016.
“The government has over-collected billions from Ontario businesses through the debt retirement charge on electricity bills even though the Auditor General confirmed the debt was repaid in 2011. It’s commitment to end the charge ‘early’ just before the next provincial election is nothing more than another political ploy by a tired and self-interested government.
“This latest mandate letter is evidence that the Wynne Government continues to put the interest of the Liberal Party above the interest of Ontario taxpayers.”