2020 Provincial Budget Consultations

It was great to have the Minister of Finance Rod Phillips as well as the Deputy Premier Christine Elliott and MPP Michael Parsa host a 2020 budget consultation right here in Aurora. I was scheduled to make comments, unfortunately I was unable to attend due to illness. I will be sending in my comments as a written submission as I feel it is important to take any opportunity to let the Province know what is important to Aurora! I want to thank the Minister’s and MPP for hosting this event in Aurora. Here are a few of my comments that I will be sending to the Minister… 

Making Life More Affordable

  • We continue to hear from residents who are facing challenges with the costs of fuel, daycare, car and house insurance and the rising costs of home repairs.
  • When these costs rise faster than inflation – and when salaries don’t rise with inflation – everyday citizens struggle to bridge the gap between the money coming in and the money going out.

Preparing People for Jobs

  • York Region and Aurora are experiencing dramatic growth and we are exciting to be welcoming more and more new immigrants to our communities. Programs that support new immigrants entering the workforce are critical to ensuring that our residents can contribute in a meaningful way to the economic growth of the community and feel safe and secure as they begin their new lives here in Canada.
  • Providing jobs in our community is a key goal and one way that we can grow the kinds of jobs people want and need is by increasing access to post-secondary institutions outside of Toronto. We want to be able to provide access to world-class education close to home and to see the long-term benefits and economic spin off of having a post-secondary institution in our community.

Creating a More Competitive Business Environment

  • Municipalities currently have limited tools for generating revenue and we rely heavily on development charges to fund the growing demands for services. High development charges makes us less competitive when it comes to attracting businesses.

Connecting People to Places

Public Transportation

  •  Traffic congestion has a huge impact on growth and affects where people are willing to live and work.
  • Investing in GO service and public transit is critical for communities like Aurora.
  • GO parking is a huge issue for our residents because there isn’t the public transportation infrastructure to get people to and from the station quickly and efficiently. The first and last mile of the commute continues to be a problem.
  • We need the province to invest in public transportation to help reduce congestion, make communities like Aurora more attractive to live, and to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

High-Speed Internet  

  • Easy and affordable access to high-speed Internet can help entice businesses to set up in communities like Aurora.
  • Ensuring people have the technology to work from home can also help ease congestion.

Building Healthier and Safer Communities

  • Municipalities are struggling to pay for repair and replacement costs for all of its asset infrastructure such as town facilities, roads, streetlights, sidewalks, parks and trails, etc. Water and wastewater infrastructure in particular are huge capital expenses facing local governments.
  • Investment and support from the provincial government in infrastructure can help relive the burden for taxpayers who are currently on the hook for some of these massive and very necessary projects.
  • With severe weather increasing as a result of climate change, municipalities need to ensure that our water and wastewater infrastructure is able to continue delivering safe and reliable water to our residents and reduce flooding that can be potentially damaging to property and the safety of citizens.

Making Government Smarter

  • Continue to invest in modernization and technology. Municipalities know what we need to do to increase efficiency, but modernization programs require resources that are not always readily available.
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