The mandate of any politically elected government is to serve and protect all the people in their jurisdiction. One of the key requirements is wise use and investment of the funds, so financial competence is necessary for good stewardship. With this in mind, I thought I would look for 12 of the most costly financial decisions/mistakes over the last 10 years. Since the Ontario Provincial Liberals have been the only party in power in the last 10 years, they can be held accountable for the outcome of these decisions.
#1 Provincial Debt – Ministry of Finance – $143.35 billion increase since 2003
The projected budget for Ontario for 2014-15 is $127.6 billion in expenses with $117 billion in revenue so with deficit financing the government will add $10.6 billion to the Ontario provincial debt. This is in addition to the existing $276 billion provincial deficit, approximately $20,500 per person.
Ontario’s net debt – the difference between total liabilities and total financial assets – has more than doubled under the Liberal leadership. In 2002 -2003 the net debt was $132.65 billion but has increased to $276 billion by 2014, so the Liberal government has added $143.35 billion to the provincial debt
The negative consequences of a large debt load include debt-servicing costs which divert funding away from other government programs; a greater vulnerability to any interest-rate increases; and a potential credit-rating downgrade which could make it more expensive to borrow. Our children and grandchildren will pay more taxes and have fewer options because of this increasing debt load.
#2. Feed in Tariff (FIT) subsidy paid to multinational industrial wind energy corporations – Ministry of Energy – $1.6 billion per year for FIT contracts for wind energy plus $2 billion per year for discounted surplus hydro, so over the 20 year contracts $72 billion
The Renewable Energy Initiative as structured by Energy Minister George Smitherman will cost the rate payers of this province $1.6 BILLION per year in Feed in Tariff (FIT) contracts for wind energy for the next 20 years. We have the highest electricity rates in North America – a fact that is driving commerce and industry out of this province. Continue reading The Dirty Dozen – 12 costly mistakes made by the provincial government in the last 10 years