Savings in place for Northern residents
Last week, Bill 44, an Act to implement the Northern Ontario Energy credit was debated in the Ontario legislature. This bill was solely about the Northern Ontario Energy Credit and the relief this will bring to people in northern Ontario.
Last week, Bill 44, an Act to implement the Northern Ontario Energy credit was debated in the Ontario legislature.
This bill was solely about the Northern Ontario Energy Credit and the relief this will bring to people in northern Ontario. Our government introduced this credit in recognition of the fact that we in the North pay more for heating.
The credit will provide up to $130 for individuals; up to $200 for families and that’s relief that is being provided only to people in Northern Ontario.
This energy credit isn’t the only form of tax relief that’s coming to Northerners. A series of tax relief measures were included in last year’s budget. This year, 93 per cent of Ontarians will receive a personal income tax cut.
All Ontario taxpayers will now see a 16.5 per cent cut in the tax rate on their first $37,106 of taxable income, making Ontario’s rate the lowest of any province in Canada. There are also transition payments that range between $300 to $1,000.
We’ve increased the tax relief for low-income support through the sales tax credit and the property tax credit and the Seniors Homeowners Property Tax Grant has doubled to a maximum of $500. These measures are part of our tax reform package that provides Ontarians with significant permanent tax relief—and it includes theNorthern Energy Credit, which is specifically for northern Ontario.
Over three years, the Ontario government will be providing Ontarians with $11.8 billion in direct payments and permanent personal income tax cuts. That’s far from a tax grab.
The tax relief measures, including the Northern Energy Credit, will help Ontarians.
For each $100 of tax relief we’ve brought in, you would have to spend $1,250 on something that was previously PST-exempt to equal that relief. You would have to expend a lot of money on previously PST-exempt items before you're would use up the full width and breadth of the measures that we have brought in.
The Northern Energy Credit is part of a larger reform of Ontario’s tax system. These reforms will help to make Ontario more competitive by reducing the cost of doing business. The HST, for example, reduces business costs, while encouraging investments in new equipment, technology and other upgrades that will help Ontario’s companies compete.
That will help us to keep the jobs we have and encourage more investment which will create new and better jobs. That’s why economists have endorsed Ontario’s HST.
According to one report, over the next 10 years the HST alone is expected to provide Ontario with close to 600,000 net new jobs, increase capital investment by $47 billion and hike annual wages by almost nine per cent.
In addition to the Northern Energy Credit, the budget provides Northern Ontario with a program to lower electricity rates for large industrials, an increase to the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund and more money for training.
We have, by anyone's definition, gone through the greatest recession since the Great Depression. Given the context that we all find ourselves in right now, I'm especially proud that we found the capacity to provide Northern Ontarians with these important new investments.