This afternoon, Honourable Peter Bethlenfalvy, Ontario’s Minister of Finance, delivered the 2021 Budget in the Ontario Legislature. This budget, named “Ontario’s Action Plan: Protecting People’s Health and Our Economy'', focuses on investments towards the next phase of the COVID-19 pandemic. This budget makes significant investments towards the province’s health care system and protecting Ontario’s economy.
The economic overview shows that Ontario’s gross domestic product (GDP) has declined by 5.7% and the province’s deficit is projected to be $33.1 billion in 2021-22. Ontario has, however, gained $829,400 new jobs since June 2020.
The 2021 Budget’s total expense outlook is $3.2 billion higher than the 2020 Budget forecast, resulting in a total of $190 billion.
This budget builds on previous actions made by the government by adding an investment of $6.1 billion, which brings the total provincial COVID-19 response to $51 billion over four years.
This budget covers investments in two pillars:
$16.3 billion in Protecting People’s Health
$23.3 billion in Protecting Our Economy
PILLAR 1: PROTECTING PEOPLE’S HEALTH
Ontario is investing $1 billion towards the province-wide vaccination plan and $2.3 billion for testing and contact tracing. The government’s Ontario’s Three-Phase Vaccine Distribution Plan includes:
Phase 1 (December 2020 - March 2021)
Targeting high-risk populations of about 1.8 million Ontarians including:
Congregate living for seniors
Health care workers
Adults aged 80 years and older
Adults in First Nations, Metis and Inuit communities
Phase 2 (April 2021 - July 2021)
Aiming of mass deliveries to about 9 million Ontarians including:
Adults aged 60-79
Those with high-risk conditions
Phase 3 (July 2021 - onwards)
Aiming towards a steady state by targeting the rest of the population
The highlights of this pillar include the following investments:
Total of $3.7 billion over two years for a comprehensive testing strategy
Over $1.4 billion for personal protective equipment (PPE)
Wellington Dupont is a North American public affairs firm with strong talent working closely across Canada and the United States.
With offices in Washington, D.C., Ottawa, Toronto and Winnipeg, Wellington Dupont's approach ensures consistent and seamless results throughout all offices while keeping top of mind policy and regulations on both sides of the border.
Wellington Dupont’s team of trusted advisors uses their combined experience in media relations, business, politics, and government to provide sound counsel and strategic advice while helping clients achieve results.