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Title - The View from Dundas
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Ontario, comfortably the same
By Phillip Blancher
OurHometown.ca

Ontario, comfortably the same
Now that the election is over, there is a comfort in knowing the Liberals have won a majority at Queen's Park. That comfort comes from knowing where you stand as a taxpayer in Ontario. You are going to pay more, for everything, in Ontario. The Liberals were very forthcoming with that before the election with their budget, and during the election by promising the same budget they were defeated on.
PHOTO CREDIT - Boldts.net

South Dundas - June 24, 2014 - Now that the election is over, there is a comfort in knowing the Liberals have won a majority at Queen's Park. That comfort comes from knowing where you stand as a taxpayer in Ontario. You are going to pay more, for everything, in Ontario. The Liberals were very forthcoming with that before the election with their budget, and during the election by promising the same budget they were defeated on.

Electricity rates are going to jump 42% in the next five years. That Electricity bill, that has more than doubled in the last 10 years, will go up. What they will not tell you is that 42% is only a ball park. It will be more. As the Ontario Liberals have saddled Ontarians with the failed "Green Energy" policy and needlessly paid billions for cancelling or relocating gas plants, 42% will be the minimum. Expect electricity to go up even higher.

Taxes are going to go up. In the short term, just the high-income earners will pay more. The budget tabled May 1st stated that. But there will be more tax increases to come, and everyone will have to pay. Why? The credit card is almost maxed-out. Premier Wynne and her merry band of supporters have done nothing to cut their spending, relying on Justin Trudeau's "The budget will balance themselves" mantra of fiscal management. Not everyone agrees with the Trudeau method, and it was tried before.

Think back to 1990, and Bob Rae was Premier. It was glorious times, a new fresh government, new roads, more transit, more power plants, a bigger social safety net, and provincial auto insurance. Bob Rae was happy to spend us out of a recession, and tripled the deficit in his first year in office. By the end of his term, the provincial debt almost tripled. Remember those times? Remember when the bond markets Wall Street and Bay Street cut up the province's Credit Card? Now fast-forward. In 11 years of Ontario Liberal Rule, the deficit had more than tripled from the start of the first Dalton McGuinty mandate and has come back down to just double. The province's debt load has increased 2.5 times what it was in 2003, to over $238 Billion; and in 2012, the province's credit rating was downgraded over concerns with the debt load and deficits.

Kathleen Wynne is going to have her Bob Rae moment, and when that happens, expect taxes to go up. Everything will go up because it has to.

Another comfort you can take in this Liberal win, is that if you live in a rural area, you know where you stand. Urban dwellers rule the province. Most of northern Ontario, except Thunder Bay, voted NDP. Most of the rural areas of southern Ontario, except Glengarry-Prescott-Russell, voted Progressive Conservative. Almost everyone in urban ridings voted for the Liberals. The urbanites have won. For the next four years, if you live in a riding not held by a Liberal, or live outside of an urban area, expect nothing from the Kathleen Wynne government except a bill.

Rural areas in need of money to help with an issue, forget about it. Rural issues of importance, expect "kids in short pants" policy wonks from Toronto to dictate policy, kids who've never set foot on a farm. Expect G-P-R MPP Grant Crack to rack up the travel expenses as the Liberals pay lip service to the rural people. Also expect that you rural people, you will help pay for everything Toronto wants. New transit, tax the farmer in Maxville. New "Revenue Tools" for some social program in the GTA, tax the small business owner in Tweed. Just don't expect anything in return.

Do not forget the age-old politic of riding favouritism. Those who win power reward the ridings that supported them, and ignore the ones that did not. Expect nothing but a bill from the government, if you live in a riding held by the PCs or NDP. At least you can be comforted by the fact that six months before the 2018 election, you may get some Liberal largess if your riding has a chance of changing to the Liberals.

If you voted Liberal, and live in a Liberal riding, or live in an urban area, you will be comforted in the fact that you will receive all of the great and wondrous things the Kathleen Wynne government has promised. If you live the rural area, or the north, you will be comforted by the fact you will receive the bill to help pay for things for urban areas that you will not receive. You may also be comforted by the fact that when the credit card runs out, and the axe falls on all of the goodies from Liberals that can't be paid for any more, the urban areas will get hit just as hard in the pocket book as you will.

Small comfort.

Follow Me on TwitterPhillip Blancher is a writer, web geek and communications professional by trade. He has written for a number of publications in Eastern Ontario and Northern New York State and also was a weekly morning show contributor for two area radio stations. As a resident of South Dundas for the last seven years, this long-time political buff has taken on an appreciation of small-town/rural life while also being a father of four and a soccer coach. Blancher's columns on OurHometown.ca will cover a range of his interests from politics, parenthood, local history and on his favourite NHL team, the Buffalo Sabres. If you have questions or wish to contact Phillip, you can email him at pblancher@ourhometown.ca






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