TORONTO, ON – Stephanie Bowman, Ontario Liberal Finance Critic and MPP for Don Valley West has released the following statement in response to the Financial Accountability Office’s (FAO) analysis of government spending:
“In a time of closing ERs, a mental health crisis, and an affordability and housing crisis, the fact that this Conservative government is not spending the $7.2 billion they promised to the people of Ontario is not just fiscally irresponsible, but a failure in leadership.
“This underspending has a direct impact on our lives: it is felt when the local hospital ER is closed, when children do not get the classroom supports they need, and when people are on the streets because this government is failing to provide housing and mental health supports. They have spent less than they said they would on every program: healthcare, post-secondary education, children’s and social services, justice, and education.
“They are letting the people of Ontario down, especially those in rural communities like Minden who have seen their local ER closed, resulting in at least a 20-minute longer drive to get the lifesaving care they may need. They are letting them down by underspending on mental health services, and getting the broadband they need for reliable internet service. They are letting them down by not investing in reliable transit, in Scarborough, for example, to help families get to where they need to go.
“This government pretends that they are broke so they cannot be asked to fix what is broken. Every quarter the FAO proves them wrong. The people of Ontario deserve transparency in our public finances, and they deserve a government that works for them.”