The 2021 Budget is making good on our commitment to do whatever it takes to keep people safe, while building on the foundation to create the growth we need for a strong economy
Our PC government’s primary focus is to protect every life and every job we possibly can from COVID-19. Without healthy people, we can’t have a healthy economy.
Today, we were pleased to introduce Ontario’s Action Plan: Protecting People’s Health and Our Economy, the next phase of Ontario’s response to COVID-19. It brings total investments to $16.3 billion to protect people’s health and $23.3 billion to protect our economy. Ontario’s COVID-19 action plan support now totals $51 billion.
“Eventually the pandemic will be behind us. It is months, not years away,” said Peter Bethlenfalvy, MPP for Pickering—Uxbridge, Minister of Finance and President of the Treasury Board. “We will get to that day through the hard work and sacrifice of Team Ontario. Our government is going to be there every step of the way to make good on our commitment to protect people’s health and jobs. When this chapter is finally closed, I’m confident that the people of Ontario are going to unleash the economic growth that is necessary for job creation, prosperity and a stronger province.”
This budget is making good on our commitment to do whatever it takes to keep people safe, while building on the foundation to create the growth we need for a strong economy. It also builds on the significant supports for families, workers and employers that have been made available since the beginning of the pandemic.
Specifically, the first pillar in the 2021 Budget outlines Ontario’s plan for defeating COVID-19, fixing long-term care and caring for people, which includes:
- Making over $1 billion available for a provincewide vaccination plan, to vaccinate every person in the province who wants to be vaccinated.
- Investing an additional $650 million in 2021–22, bringing the total resources invested since the beginning of the pandemic to protect loved ones in long-term care to over $2 billion.
- Investing an additional $5.1 billion to help create more than 3,100 additional hospital beds. This includes $1.8 billion in 2021–22 to continue providing care for COVID-19 patients, address surgical backlogs and keep pace with patient needs.
The second pillar in the 2021 Budget outlines Ontario’s plan to support families, workers and employers, which includes:
- Proposing a new Ontario Jobs Training Tax Credit for 2021, which would provide up to $2,000 per recipient for 50 per cent of eligible expenses to help afford training.
- Providing a third round of payments to support parents through Ontario’s COVID-19 Child Benefit. The payment will be doubled to $400 per child for this round and $500 for each child with special needs.
- Proposing a 20 per cent enhancement of the CARE tax credit for 2021 to support parents with the cost of child care and help them get back to the workforce. This would increase support from $1,250 to $1,500, on average, providing about $75 million in additional support for the child care expenses of over 300,000 families.
- Providing a second round of Ontario Small Business Support Grant payments to eligible recipients, bringing the estimated total support provided through this grant to $3.4 billion.
- Investing an additional $400 million over the next three years in new initiatives to support Ontario’s tourism, hospitality and culture industries.
- Investing $2.8 billion to connect more homes, businesses and communities to broadband.
Hope is on the horizon – it’s months, not years away. Until then, we will maintain our unwavering commitment to protect the people of Ontario and their jobs.