Provincial Government Releases 2024 Budget

Building a better Ontario means better services for you

HURON – BRUCE — MPP Thompson announced that today, Minister of Finance Peter Bethlenfalvy released the 2024 Budget: Building a Better Ontario. Like the rest of the world, Ontario continues to face economic uncertainty due to high interest rates and global instability. These challenges are putting pressure on Ontario families and their finances, as well as the province’s finances. Despite these challenges, Ontario is continuing to deliver on its Plan to Build by investing in infrastructure to get more homes built faster and attracting better jobs with bigger paycheques, all while keeping costs down for families and businesses and retaining a path to balance.

Budget 2024 delivers on key local priorities of building more community infrastructure. Announced today was the Community Sport and Infrastructure Fund which will help communities, including those in Huron – Bruce, grow and thrive as they look to invest in new and upgrade existing sports and recreation facilities. This will support the health and well-being of children, families and seniors across Ontario.

“Our government has a plan to build a better Ontario, all the while ensuring we keep provincial costs down because many families and businesses are feeling the pinch,” said Lisa Thompson, MPP for Huron – Bruce. “I am pleased that local priorities throughout the communities in our riding are reflected in the budget, it demonstrates that our government continues to listen and deliver in the spirit of Building a Better Ontario. I will continue to advocate on our communities’ behalf.”

The budget also reiterated a key priority of the Ontario Government, which is to build a stronger, cleaner electrical grid across the province. This includes continued support of the Bruce Power nuclear generating station and working on pre-development work for the first large-scale nuclear build in over three decades in Canada.

Health Care is also been a focal point in this year’s budget. While hospitals are core to Ontario’s health care network, it can be more convenient and effective for people to receive care through their family doctors or primary care teams. The investment announced today will support connecting nearly 600,000 more people to primary care through new and expanded interprofessional care teams.  

In an effort to increase tourism across the province, the government has allocated funding to build around 250 new campsites across our provincial parks system. This includes the addition of 30 new campsites at MacGregor Point Provincial Park.

The government is also proposing to eliminate the wine basic tax that applies to sales of Ontario wine and wine coolers in on-site winery retail stores. The new rate would come into effect on April 1, 2024. There will also be a targeted review of taxes and fees on beer, wine and alcoholic beverages with the aim of promoting a more competitive marketplace for Ontario made products which will ultimately drive more agri-tourism for breweries and wineries across the province.

Highlights of the Province’s significant actions include:

  • Investing $1 billion in the new Municipal Housing Infrastructure Program and quadrupling the Housing-Enabling Water Systems Fund to a total of $825 million to help municipalities repair and expand the critical infrastructure needed to reach their housing targets.
  • Connecting approximately 600,000 people to primary health care by investing an additional $546 million over three years.
  • Supporting a new medical school at York University, which will be the first medical school in Canada focused primarily on training family doctors.
  • Launching a new $200 million Community Sport and Recreation Infrastructure Fund to strengthen communities across Ontario by building and upgrading sport, recreation and community facilities.
  • Investing $46 million over three years, including for the purchase of four police helicopters, to improve community safety by supporting increased patrols and faster response times to major incidents and serious crimes.
  • Investing in courthouse facilities to improve safety, make efficient use of public space and modernize technology.
  • Keeping costs down for people and businesses by proposing to extend the temporary cuts to the gasoline tax rate by 5.7 cents per litre and the fuel (diesel) tax rate by 5.3 cents per litre until December 31, 2024. This would save Ontario households $320 on average since the cuts were first introduced in July 2022. This relief is especially important as the federal carbon tax is set to increase on April 1, 2024.
  • Adding an additional $100 million in the Skills Development Fund tis year to help job seekers advance their careers.
  • Supporting individuals facing unstable housing conditions and dealing with mental health and addictions challenges by investing an additional $152 million over three years toward various supportive housing initiatives designed to support vulnerable people.