Archive for the ‘Governance’ Category

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Raising the incomes of the poorest Ontarians

Friday, May 6th, 2022

While the cost of living is going up dramatically, Ontario Works and ODSP rates have been frozen since 2018… more than 843,000 Ontarians are living in deep poverty. / Ontario is in the midst of an affordable housing crisis. / … precarious working conditions… the minimum wage well below the living wage. / Long-term care residents have suffered more than almost any other group in our province during the pandemic.

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Why Doug Ford will once again win the Ontario election

Wednesday, May 4th, 2022

If a politician or a political party believes voters cast ballots in favour of policy positions laid out in a party platform, then they badly misunderstand persuasion and what it takes to motivate a voter… elections are communication challenges, and communication is not a rational process of information transmission… Communication is a process of producing an impact on others, not transmitting information on policy goals.

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Ontario budget falls flat on funding for public services

Wednesday, May 4th, 2022

Despite all the spending, public services do not seem to be a priority… Normally, health spending must rise by at least 4.5% a year just to maintain services. The budget’s plan for health care is to cut it… Take [federally funded Early Learning & Child Care] out of the education budget and the net result is that, in a time of high inflation, education is almost certainly seeing a cut in real funding per student…

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Canada’s parliamentary watchdogs struggle for more financial independence

Saturday, April 30th, 2022

The auditor general is Canada’s first officer of Parliament, created shortly after Confederation to check government spending. In the firmament of the nine agents of Parliament, the auditor general, with a $117-million budget, is the uber-watchdog, the most visible and often better known than ministers… the auditor general’s office has a deeply entrenched culture of independence and a “semi-adversarial role” in dealing with government.

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New bill will force tech giants to negotiate deals to pay media to use their content

Tuesday, April 12th, 2022

“Now more than ever, Canadians need reliable and credible information, especially in a time of greater mistrust and disinformation.” The bill, designed to support Canada’s independent media, is modelled on an Australian law making tech companies such as Google and Meta, which owns Facebook and Instagram, pay for news content on their platforms.

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This tax ‘loophole’ has helped rich Canadians avoid millions in taxes for their private corporations. Now the government wants to shut it down

Sunday, April 10th, 2022

The government said this amendment to the Income Tax Act would increase federal revenues by an estimated $4.2 billion over five years, according to the budget tabled on April 7… It appears the CRA only began in recent years cracking down on this technique of shifting a private company’s status for tax purposes, although the strategy emerged as early as 2010… the government did not address several broader tax loopholes that it was expected to.

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From health care to pharmacare to housing, federal budget fails Canadians

Sunday, April 10th, 2022

In many ways, this failed budget looks like gesture politics, the act of appearing to care but doing little of substance… Canada can afford to do better for its people. The Canadian economy is indeed “booming”… The Parliamentary Budget Office (PBO) expects GDP to hit $2.8 trillion next year, about 18 higher than Ottawa forecast in December… Using conservative estimates, Ottawa is projecting a sharp drop in the federal deficit…

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Budget 2022: Some progress, but no need for panic at the country club

Friday, April 8th, 2022

Today’s federal commitment to create a national dental care program will help millions of Canadians, but there’s a huge missed opportunity to move forward on pharmacare, long-term care and needed health care spending to deal with the pandemic’s impact… Many Canadians are feeling the weight of living in uncertain times. They need better income security, better access to Employment Insurance if they lose their job, more affordable housing, and the world needs a bolder climate change plan than what’s on the table.

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Budget promises lower deficit, but more spending on housing, defence and social programs

Thursday, April 7th, 2022

To increase revenues, the government will introduce a new tax on financial institutions… [and] serves notice on high-income earners… to decide by next year if a wealth tax… is warranted… In addition to outlays for housing and dental care, the budget pegs new spending on climate action at $12.4 billion and more than $8 billion on national defence… [but] it fails to address the crisis in health care and long-term care with meaningful measures and money…

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Always ahead of her time, Kathleen Wynne has some advice as she prepares to leave Queen’s Park

Wednesday, April 6th, 2022

The pioneering ideas Wynne fought in vain for are back in vogue after the realities of the pandemic: Child care. Check. Pharmacare. Check. Paid sick days. Check. Minimum wage increases. Check. Basic income support. Check. Wynne’s defeat led to the demise of her reforms in all these areas, as Ford’s Tories systematically dismantled what she had built. Within days of taking power, the PCs pulled the plug on her OHIP+ drug program and then went down the list.

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