For Immediate Release

April 27, 2017

Mayor Crombie Welcomes Ontario Budget 2017

“On behalf of the City of Mississauga and Members of Council, we welcome the initiatives brought forward in today’s provincial budget.

“We applaud the provincial government’s focused commitment to build regionally-integrated transit and modern infrastructure, with its renewed commitment to double the municipal share of the gas tax. Mississauga can expect approximately $33 million in gas tax funding. These are important and necessary funds that Council will use to invest to break gridlock, build transit and move people and our economy forward.

“The government’s unprecedented commitment to fund $56 billion in public transit over the next 10 years will go toward the GO Regional Express rail initiative which will improve the number of trips on these crucial transit lines.

“The introduction of the Ontario Seniors’ Public Transit Tax Credit will make it more affordable for our older adult community to use MiWay transit service. It’s consistent with Mississauga’s own efforts to make transit affordable, like our own $1 senior transit fare.

“I also welcome news that Trillium’s Mississauga Hospital will receive increased funding for expansion and renovation for the purpose of adding new hospital spaces. Each day thousands of Mississauga residents rely on quality, public front-line healthcare offered at this facility.

“On the issue of the government’s Fair Housing Plan and the non-resident speculation tax, I want to reiterate that further study and analysis is needed to better understand what these new measures mean for Mississauga and how they will impact our housing market.

“In the interest of accountability and transparency, I strongly believe any and all revenue generated by new tax measures must go directly toward creating more affordable housing options and the building of transit, so we can build critically needed housing and allow people to more easily get to and from home.

“On the issue of granting municipalities the authority to implement a new hotel tax, Council and staff will need to review this new revenue power closely. We will need to understand the expected revenue it will generate, what it will mean for the competitiveness of local businesses and how we could best allocate this new funding to invest in the public services businesses and people rely on each day.

“We further welcome today’s announcement that the budget is balanced and will be for the foreseeable future. We encourage the government to maintain fiscal prudence as they make investments. As Mississauga knows well, strong financial ratings are critical to future success. A balanced Ontario budget, coupled with Mississauga’s Triple-A credit rating, sends the right message to businesses that Ontario and its cities are destinations they can confidently invest in to expand service offerings, create jobs and remain ahead of the competition. Investor confidence is fundamental to the success of Mississauga’s foreign-direct investment and retention efforts.

“On the issue of international trade, the provincial government’s commitment to fund $50 million over the next three years to improve Ontario’s reach in international markets will be a boon for cities like Mississauga and our own local economic development efforts in places like Japan.  Mississauga is home to more Japanese-based companies than any other Canadian city.

“The Province is also moving forward with plans to unlock value from other real estate assets including the Seaton and Lakeview lands. Support for Inspiration Lakeview – the City of Mississauga’s vision for its eastern waterfront –remains an important initiative. I want to recognize Ward 1 Councillor Jim Tovey for helping ensure all levels of government understand and appreciate the potential for revitalizing Mississauga’s eastern waterfront to create a new and sustainable mixed use community – home to an unrivalled quality of life.

“I want to thank Ontario Finance Minister and Mississauga South MPP Charles Sousa for meeting with me in February 2017, in advance of this budget, to discuss our city-building priorities and pre-budget submission.”