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Sault could have had $28 million, Ross says

Saturday, May 24, 2014   by: Darren Taylor

The provincial NDP has taken aim at costly gas plant cancellations and other controversial expenditures under the current Liberal government at Queen’s Park throughout this provincial election campaign.

After NDP leader Andrea Horwath released her official campaign platform Thursday, Sault NDP candidate Celia Ross (pictured with campaign office staffers) said the NDP has calculated gas plant cancellations, eHealth and Ornge have cost Ontario taxpayers approximately $3 billion.

Broken down riding by riding, Ross said Friday that would have amounted to $28 million for services in Sault Ste. Marie. 

Ross spoke to Friday at her campaign office to voice her support for Horwath’s campaign platform.

“It’s a very accountable platform, one that will balance the budget by 2017 -2018, the same target date as the Liberals, but while we balance it we’ll be mindful of the real needs of the people and our businesses that create jobs for people,” Ross said.

The NDP plan is based on the three cornerstones of job creation, affordability and accountability, and will benefit Sault Ste. Marie under a New Democrat government, Ross said.

Ross said Ontario has lost thousands of manufacturing jobs during the Liberal tenure, noting job losses with the closure of St. Marys Paper and layoffs by other large manufacturers locally.

“We’re going to have a manufacturer’s tax credit, and that’s absolutely key for manufacturers like Essar to reinvest in equipment.”

“What’s been happening with the Liberals is no strings attached tax giveaways to corporations and they have been amassing money and sitting on it, so we’ve got to get that money moving to create jobs here in the Sault,” Ross said.

Ross said an NDP government would reduce provincial taxes small businesses pay, from 4.5 percent to 2 percent, to help them meets costs and hire more staff.

“Small businesses are very proud of their employees and usually want to hire more, and we want to help them do that, and tax relief is one way.”

Ross criticized plans to modernize OLG.

“Modernization means privatization, and under privatization will there be an OLG head office at all?” Ross said.

“Jobs could move away from Ontario through modernization…we need to keep those OLG jobs here in Sault Ste. Marie.”

“The government should run its own businesses like OLG and the LCBO, be proud of what we own and run those businesses well,” Ross said.

On the topic of affordability, Ross said the NDP would take the provincial tax off hydro bills “immediately.”

The NDP, Ross said, plans to merge Ontario’s four current electricity agencies into one and cap CEO salaries.

“The CEO of one of those companies makes $1.6 million a year…I think all four of them could run under one CEO.”

Ross said the NDP would carry through on a promise to cut auto insurance rates by 15 percent (under the Liberals, those rates are down by 6 percent), inject $100 million into childcare which would help address the need for more subsidized childcare spaces in Sault Ste. Marie, put nurse practitioners into hospital ERs across Ontario to trim wait times, create 1,400 long-term care beds for people who need  transitional care after being released from hospital, and guarantee homecare within five days.

1,000 educational assistants would also be hired to help out in Ontario schools as teachers address the complex needs of children with disabilities.

In regards to accountability, Ross supported the idea of appointing a financial accountability officer to keep an eye on taxpayer money and avoid overspending.

“We’re very keen on setting up a financial accountability office to tell the people of Ontario how much projects will cost,” Ross said.


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OrlandoFlorida 5/24/2014 10:12:58 AM Report

Thank you for recognizing that the privatization of OLG will mean the loss of jobs in the Soo. Mr Orazzetti would rather hope that privatization will mean some jobs stay in the city as opposed to fighting to keep them all here by opposing a Southern Ontario scheme to move OLG jobs to Toronto or even worse, see those jobs move to another province or country.
AlwaysAWinner 5/24/2014 10:24:52 AM Report

this northern/southern Ontario BS has to stop. enough with this complaining and elitist attitude. it's clear people up here think they're "better" than the southern Ontario residents. truth is we barely have anyone up here and we should act like ONE province, not act like were better than the southern part of us.
suunnny 5/24/2014 10:30:13 AM Report

Hmmm. Let's see. A plan that addresses key issues in all our lives and particular problems for our own city? I hope people are paying attention. The city will certain have the daycare needs that Joe Fratesi said the Liberals are dropping. Will he vote NDP? The Liberals are DONE as a government. Do we really want Orazietti representing us in opposition or Celia sitting with the government? Come on Sault Ste. Marie, a vote for the NDP is principled and strategic.The Liberals are DONE! They can't survive throwing away $3 Billion of our money. The Liberals are DONE!
sinikka 5/24/2014 10:50:03 AM Report

Nice try Suunnie, the NDP are the Fiberals of a different colour. The PC's are the only ones that can bring prosperity to this province. If the NDP do get it i think it will be safe to say that the taxpayers will be paying for the mess for decades to come. Are we done paying for the Bob Rae mess yet. The NDP is a party of protest, with no real platform. Most of the NDP initiates are Liberal in nature with a little twist. These are the same things that the NDP turned down in this year's budget that triggered an election.Stop fearing the PC's , we desperately need their leadership.
Jack Ford 5/24/2014 10:52:11 AM Report

Celia Ross seems to have some great ideas. But, am I the only one that sees that she is in pain every time she smiles ? She looks really uncomfortable with a smile on her face. Just an observation.

If the Liberals are done, why is a vote for the PC party so out of line? Shouldn't we want fiscal responsibility and restraint? Haven't the Liberals and NDP both shown that you can't spend your way out of debt?

I don't see a great option on any front with these politicians but Dave has had his time and proved detrimental to the North and Celia seems a bit out of touch with financial reality.

Just some thoughts....

suunnny 5/24/2014 11:01:15 AM Report

Celia is in touch. She is a proven leader. I have no Liberal twist in me. They are not committed to social and economic justice. Our unemployment rate will go up with the Hudak destroyers who aren't fiscally responsible. Our one and only NDP gov't. was trying to fix the Harris/Peterson mess. The PC's have no chance in the Sault and unless we vote for Celia we will have Orazietti in opposition. I know life-long Liberals gave money to PC Hayes in the Fed and abandoned Provenzano. PC supporters are returning the favour. No principles and bad strategy.
suunnny 5/24/2014 11:03:08 AM Report

... and isn't a commitment to a balanced budget fiscally responsible? You don't take things away to get growth.
ducky58 5/24/2014 11:37:00 AM Report

Like I have said before it doesn't matter who you vote for we are screwed. There is no one that can promise a dam thing in this election every member of parliament has to agree to it and we know that is never going to happen. So as I said before were screwed people bend over people again.
AlwaysAWinner 5/24/2014 11:44:36 AM Report

Yup, they're all a bunch of phonies. they all have their agenda and they don't care about the general public. they only care about what gets them votes.

I won't vote and I probably never will. every representative is a two faced liar. its how politics works.
Lone24 5/24/2014 11:53:22 AM Report

I agree with the last 2 comments. Hit the nail directly on the head there.
kodak11 5/24/2014 11:55:25 AM Report

scarey but the fiberals will prolly get in again,really,hudak has the personality of a rock,and horwath proped up the fiberals too long...because there is no real choise the fiberals will probably win at least a minority.......What a sad state of politicial choises we have in ontario/canada...and i am for them slashing daycare im a firm believer in we have kids we take care of them. and yes i have kids.
Jack Ford 5/24/2014 11:58:33 AM Report

It's not always suuunny in Northern Ontario. Both the NDP and Liberals have decimated Northern Ontario with over spending in the south. Their budgets are unattainable and the worst part is that the Province as a whole is suffering because of it. The NDP is Liberal Light. The PC Party is the only alternative to the Liberals and the NDP is only helping divide the power it so longs to hold.

ThinkAgain 5/24/2014 12:40:10 PM Report

I heard from the grape vine the Liberals are going to hand out free Vaseline, the PC's are handing out Diapers, and the NDP are giving away Kleenex.
But remember you need to vote to get your free samples.
Hamguy 5/24/2014 1:39:37 PM Report

I just read a statement that Mr Fremlin (PC ) made and in it he said he wouldn't promise anything but he would work hard for the people in his riding. That's the only election talk i've heard that makes any sense. By the way, im not in the Soo riding so won't be able to give him my vote.
Me Myself an I 5/24/2014 2:11:20 PM Report

sinikka - The PCs only care about bringing prosperity to their corporation friends, and that prosperity does not translate to prosperity for the middle class
steelworker 5/24/2014 3:15:27 PM Report

...and the dippers just want to take care of welfare bums,unwed mothers with 5 kids by 5 different fathers and druggies. All at the expense of the middle class workers.
murcor 5/24/2014 3:22:37 PM Report

Did anyone see anything is Celia's article about where the NDP are getting the money to pay for all her inspired ideas? Just asking.
LSARC 5/24/2014 3:31:10 PM Report

PCs listened to rural Ontario and promised to scrap the anti-democratic "Green" Energy Act immediately and that is both unique to the parties and a huge savings to both taxpayer and ratepayer!

If you think there is a flight of jobs from Ontario under the present conditions just think what it will be like if no positive change ensues...there are many people just hanging on to see if the only fiscally responsible option is given a chance.

Those people are the ones who love the land and their communities and are reluctant to leave if there is a chance that the Province is heading in the right direction.

If you can listen to economics expert Ian Lee
you will get a sense of the desperate frustration in the business community looking for signals of sanity.

welcome2 5/24/2014 3:56:42 PM Report

a couple of comments

a)would love to know what hat Celia Ross pulled the $28M rabbit out of...understand that there have been countless millions of dollars wasted by the current gov't, but there is nobody out there who can say $XXX dollars would have come to the Soo in the absence of this waste. My intelligence is insulted by someone trying to have me believe otherwise

b)I do not know who I am going to vote for in the upcoming election as I have issues with parts of all the partys" platforms. One thing I do know is that trying to spend your way to prosperity will only result in tax hikes and an increasing deficit. Does no one remember Bob Rae's tenure as premier? I would be surprised if we are not still trying to pay that deficit down.Those people pushing the NDP agenda must have a lot more disposable income than I have because they are obviously prepared to pay more taxes.
steelworker 5/24/2014 5:09:44 PM Report

I don't think she pulled that rabbit out of a hat if you catch my drift.
MYPOINT 5/24/2014 5:31:37 PM Report

Many people on here are dissing the Bob Rae Government without mentioning that he inherited a huge mess left by the former PC Government. They are also forgetting to mention that there was a minor depression happening at the same time that Rae was Premier. Did he make mistakes? Of course he did, he is and was human after all.

Many people are saying that David Orazietti would be the best pick for the Sault. They say he has brought a lot to this city and area during his time in Government. Although personally I think it is time for him to be removed, I also doubt that this will happen.

Others are saying that Fremlin should be given a chance to show us what he can do for us. Well, I do not know Fremlin but I have listened intently to his leader. Hudak should be ( and probably will be ) dropped as the leader of the PC's because of those comments he made regarding firing 100,000 public servants etc. I admit that I heard him say that this would be done ( partly ) through attrition.

Then there are those who are saying that it is time to stop the South vs North comparisons etc etc. Well that is very difficult to do since the South gets more of 'everything' because they have a huge population as compared to the North. Obviously the Government is aware of this fact and that is why the North has always been / will continue to be / abandoned by any Ontario Government in my opinion.

I seem to recall that there was an idea to 'separate' the North into it's own Province a few years back. There was a lot of discussion around this idea and then it suddenly died out almost overnight. It is true that the South has it's positives and negatives and it is true that the North has it's positives and negatives. It may be time that we do 'separate' and become our own Province? At least that way, we would have a Government who understands what the North has to offer. The South would learn almost overnight that we would no longer allow them to simply take our raw resources and leave us with less than pennies on the dollar.

I have written an open letter to ALL of the local Candidates ( LIB / NDP / PC ) and have yet to receive any kind of response. That in itself IS a response so none of them are willing to try and get some sort of 'recall' plan in place for the election after this one.

In closing, all I can say is 'good luck folks' but please get out and vote for your own particular choice. If you do NOT vote, you are giving up your right to complain about the new Government we end up with since you refused to give your input via your vote.

As always, others may have a different view :)
harry dick 5/24/2014 5:35:24 PM Report

Anyone that refuses to vote , should keep his or her big mouth SHUT. If you do not exercise your RIGHT TO VOTE , you do not have the right to flap your gums about the politics in this country -PERIOD . Voting is as much a DUTY , as it is a RIGHT .I PERSONALLY believe that our political system needs an overhaul . We should be able to VOTE on a lot of things that directly affect us on provincial and federal levels , as well voting on issues in your municipal level . A good example on this was SUNDAY SHOPPING . The people of this city decided this , by their votes . On a federal level , changes to the word "MARRAIGE" SHOULD HAVE BEEN VOTED ON "BY THE PEOPLE". THE RIGHT TO WORK ALSO SHOULD BE VOTED ON BY THE PEOPLE OF THIS PROVINCE.
As it is now , when someone becomes premier and wastes 2-3 billion dollars of the people's money , the one or one's responsible should have their paycheques and pension cheques deducted for as long as it takes to pay back that money. THE PEOPLE SHOULD HAVE MORE OF A SAY IN THE RUNNING OF THEIR GOVERNMENTS , IF THEY SO CHOOSE , but everyone should still have to vote every election . It is their obligation , not only their right.
harry dick 5/24/2014 5:46:12 PM Report

to: MYPOINT: You left out that Bob Rae also added to the monetary mess and also ,"BIT THE HAND THAT PUT HIM THERE" , while in power. He gave the Welfare people a raise and took money out of the working man's pocket [government employees] , practically at the same time. It is not the people on welfare that spends their money to drive the economy. It is the working men and women that do that, and Bob Rae stung them hard and fast. These people do not forget easily .
steelworker 5/24/2014 6:12:43 PM Report

Bobby Rae is still riding the gravy train. Just look at his latest job.
ThinkAgain 5/24/2014 7:02:27 PM Report

You may not like this comment but: Strange/funny when less than 65% vote DO NOT vote, most believe our government is a joke so why waste time/money when your going to get screwed but them all anyway.
The system including the senate has failed and unless its changed - they are only fooling you.

STOP pretending

They are only in it for there personal financial gain and they do anything to get the job.
AlwaysAWinner 5/24/2014 7:35:19 PM Report

yup, why should I HAVE to vote? if I vote I'm voting for someone I don't want. I don't want to vote for any of those parties because I don't believe any of them are actually fighting for the people, they have their agenda and their goals and they're playing people like cards. look at the way they attack each other, it's beyond childish. the liberals this, the conservative that, it's all bull. I saw an NDP rep outside of a government building the other day, guess what she was talking about? how the liberals waste our money

it's no different than american idol or your high school elections, it's a popularity contests. they're people pleasers working in government.

don't tell me I don't have a right to complain if I don't vote. So because I put a check box beside some stupid ideology my opinion is somehow validated?

corrupt is corrupt, greed is greed, people winning elections isn't about a good policy or proper budget, it's how you look and what people think of you.

the truth is everyone can complain. if you're educated and knowledgeable, you can criticize and offer solutions. but that goes away if I don't vote?

whatever, keep thinking your petty vote matters. the liberals are going to do what they want, the conservatives, every single party there. no one can make promises, but they all do.

there is no 'shining light' when it comes to this stuff. don't tell me a new liberal representative will save the party. he's a face on the product, nothing more.

it's all childish really. look at how people attack one another during these times. look at how suddenly everyone cares about the elderly and the veterans. it's a joke and it's completely transparent to anyone who pays close attention to this stuff.
eadiecougs 5/24/2014 11:41:58 PM Report

all these parties care about themselves period.I have to say to myself am I better off then my parents I say not really.
SuperiorGuy 5/25/2014 12:24:48 AM Report

Why is it the potential loss of hundreds of jobs here and millions in payroll gone as a result of lottery privatization plans isn't a major election issue in this riding? The Liberals want kill the golden lottery goose for fast cash. Seems NDP doesn't. And the PCs? They want to cut 100,000 government jobs and so losing lottery jobs is maybe something they agree with. Seems clear who to vote for if you want to maintain the millions of payroll dollars in our local economy. This is the first time I've seen the matter raised. Thanks NDP for drawing attention to an important local issue.
wandering 5/25/2014 12:37:50 AM Report

you wont see me vote they all a bunch of clown
harry dick 5/25/2014 12:56:57 AM Report

The working man does not vote and the rich and powerful get "THEIR" party in power and get the government contracts awarded to them. The more middle income people that vote , the more the rich and famous don't get to "steer the voting in their favour". If you think about it, it is that simple.
I'm In 5/25/2014 7:51:47 AM Report

harry dick: Do people on social assistance save their stipend(really), let me tell you they pay rent, other accomm. costs, clothing and food, not to mention booze and smokes (which I believe shouldn't be allowed). So you tell me people on S.A. don't put that money back into the economy even though its money from government taxes collected.
IB-fine 5/25/2014 1:13:51 PM Report

Why are people still bringing up Bob Rae? That was over 20 years ago and he inherited a huge debt from the previous government who lied and said the books were balanced. All this debt at the time the interest rates were above 20%. So you had a few "Rae Days" off, better than losing your job entirely!

Hudak is cut from the same cloth as Harris, who changed laws that took away people's rights, included the took away money from disabled funding with the slashes to welfare and got rid of Mother's Allowance.... to the one who mentioned women having 5 kids and getting the dole... Mother's Allowance is gone! At best she could get welfare and would be lucky if that housed them let alone fed them as the rates aren't even back to the pre-Harris rates for welfare or disability.

Liberal budget was to increase the housing portion of the welfare checks by $100, but nothing for the disabled!! Why Welfare has high turn around now, but those on disability are permanent in most cases, and they would have to give that money to more people.

Seems the CONservatives always have to blame someone, this time it's the public service sector whose average workers haven't had a raise in 4 years but the top dogs are on the Sunshine list. Last time Harris blamed the welfare/Mother's Allowance and disability recipients although their entire budget accounted for less than 2$ of the total budget!
Mother's Allowance is GONE!!! OW for a single is in total $560 a month, you can't rent an apartment for that!
Disability is about $1000, and with increase in hydro rates forcing more people to sell their homes, and go where??

How about putting blame where it's due? The Liberals with all their money wasting scandals, Sunshine lists grow but the middle class worker doesn't get a raise. Hydro increases at least twice a year, including not only the taxes on it, but distribution charges that include the rental of the Smart meter they made us switch to! Besides with all the power we make here we should be paying next to nothing for distribution, BUT they sell the power to the US at a loss so we have to get our power from southern ON. Does that make sense to anyone??? NO!
Take care of us first! Lower costs of hydro and delivery, and sell off to the US and other places the power, oil and gas that is gravy and lower the costs to us!
guestwho 5/26/2014 8:04:35 AM Report

the more I read,the more I think I gots to go and buy new taller hip waders,the shit is really starting to pile up high
Note: Comments that appear on the site are not the opinion of If you see an abusive post, please click the link beside the post to report it.
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