Ontario Construction News staff writer
The 2022 Ontario Economic Outlook and Fiscal Review – Ontario’s Plan to Build: A Progress Update released Monday, included a progress report on the plan to build Ontario and measures to build the economy, address the province’s labour shortage and help families and businesses reduce costs.
“From attracting investments and good jobs, to training thousands of skilled trades workers and helping keep costs down for families, we have made significant progress,” said Bethlenfalvy. “As we navigate these uncertain economic times, our government is enhancing its plan through new targeted measures that support families, seniors and small businesses.”
Highlights of targeted measures that advance the government’s plan include:
- Launching a voluntary clean energy credit registry.
- Providing Ontario’s small businesses with $185 million in income tax relief over the next three years.
- Automatically matching property tax reductions for small businesses within all municipalities that adopt the small business property subclass.
- Investing an additional $40 million in 2022–23, for a total of $145 million for the latest round of funding in the Skills Development Fund.
- Investing an additional $4.8 million over two years, beginning in 2023–24, to expand the Dual Credit program, encouraging more secondary school students to enter a career in the skilled trades or in early childhood education.
- Extending cuts to the gas tax and fuel tax rates until Dec. 31, 2023.
“We are in a time of elevated inflation that is straining household budgets by driving up prices on everyday goods and services,” said Bethlenfalvy. “But I am confident in the resilience of Ontario’s economy, its workers and its people. And I remain confident in our government’s plan to maintain our fiscal flexibility, so we can provide targeted support to people and businesses today, while building for the future.”
Highlights of Building Ontario progress report:
- Attracted $16 billion in automotive investments by global automakers and suppliers of electric vehicle batteries and battery materials over the last two years.
- $2.5 billion over the past year to support transformation in the steel sector and help make the province a world‐leading producer of low‐carbon steel.
- Introduced first-ever Critical Minerals Strategy and $1 billion to support critical legacy infrastructure such as all-season roads to the Ring of Fire.
- Continued support for skilled trades, with over 71,700 new registrations in apprenticeship programs, more than 25,000 Certificates of Apprenticeship and 5,600 Certificates of Qualification between 2018 and 2020.
- $25 billion in highway expansion and rehabilitation over the next 10 years to connect communities, fight gridlock and keep goods and people moving across the province, including building Highway 413 and the Bradford Bypass, and expanding Highway 401.