TORONTO — Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne took steps Thursday to avoid a possible spring election by announcing the Liberal government would not raise taxes on middle-income earners to fund public transit.
“So I just want to be clear, we’re taking those potential revenue tools off the table: increase in HST, increase in gas tax, increases in personal income tax for middle-income families,” Wynne said at a campaign-style stop at a home in mid-Toronto.
OTTAWA — The devil is in the details of the federal government’s new $14-billion infrastructure program.
Prime Minister Stephen Harper unveiled the Building Canada Fund this week, saying “our commitment to small communities has never been stronger.”
But what he didn’t mention is that the 10-year program will actually limit funding for local roads — the biggest infrastructure need of small communities — and tighten requirements for public-private partnership spending on community projects.
TORONTO — Temporary HOV lanes will be set up in southern Ontario’s Golden Horseshoe to shuttle athletes, coaches and the media during the 2015 Pan Am Games, officials announced Friday, but the Opposition warned the plan will create “traffic chaos.”
The Toronto Pan Am transportation plan calls for a 150-kilometre-long continuous network of high occupancy vehicle lanes from Hamilton to Oshawa, incorporating existing HOV lanes on the Queen Elizabeth Way and Highway 404.
TORONTO – Ontario’s transportation agency is releasing a final report today that will recommend new fees to fund public transit in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area.
Premier Kathleen Wynne will use it to determine which levies she’ll choose to raise the $2-billion a year she says is needed to fund transit.
Metrolinx put out a list of 11 possible fees last month, which include a sales tax hike, a new payroll tax, a half-cent-a-litre tax on gasoline and parking levies.
Bright sun streams through the second-floor, south-facing window of Kathleen Wynne’s Queen’s Park office, and on this freezing weekday morning it feels like the warmest place in Toronto.
The Premier of Ontario confirms that she was out before the sun was up for her morning run, despite the cold. “It’s not so bad when it’s not that windy,” she says.
TORONTO — Ontario’s New Democrats warn they won’t support new taxes or tolls from the minority Liberal government to fund public transit expansion in the Toronto-Hamilton area.
NDP Leader Andrea Horwath says she wants to make the minority Parliament work when the legislature resumes next month, but doesn’t like the Liberal plan to find new “revenue tools” to pay for upgrades to infrastructure and public transit.
TORONTO — Saying successive federal governments have ignored the country’s cities, New Democrat Leader Tom Mulcair on Friday said his party would launch national consultations on urban issues.
Mulcair said cities such as Toronto are vital to Canada’s economic growth and require support from the federal government.
The Ontario NDP on Thursday blasted the Liberal government’s 2013 budget proposal to introduce high-occupancy toll lanes on some Greater Toronto highways, saying it would effectively create “Lexus lanes” on provincial roads.
TORONTO — Ontario’s Finance Minister is calling for a meeting with his federal counterpart to urgently discuss public transit funding in the province.
Charles Sousa has written to Jim Flaherty asking Ottawa to participate in a discussion on how to best fund and support much-needed transit expansion in the province, particularly in the congested Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area.