Ontario releases Budget 2020
Ontario released its 2020 Budget, Ontario’s Action Plan: Protect, Support, Recover yesterday. The Budget sets out a total of $45 billion in spending over three years, $30 billion of which had been previously announced, to respond to the health and economic impacts of COVID-19.
For details on our recommendations to the Province, see CHF Canada’s Submission to the Standing Committee on Finance and Economic Affairs.
The budget did not make any new commitments for housing specifically. However, as part of the COVID-19 response, the provincial and federal governments have earmarked $510 million for municipalities through the Social Services Relief Fund.
The fund is intended to help municipal service managers and Indigenous housing partners protect homeless shelter staff and residents, expand rent support programming and create longer-term housing solutions.
CHF Canada’s Government Relations staff will be combing through the budget in further detail in the days to come, but a few additional highlights that may be of interest to co-ops and their members include:
- A previously announced investment of $26.75 million for emergency mental health and addictions funding – this include additional supports for indigenous communities and rent supplements for the emergency short-term rentals;
- $2 million over two years for a new Inclusive Community Grants Program to fund community supports for seniors and people with disabilities, including accessible housing;
- A new Community Paramedicine for Long-Term Care pilot program to help seniors age in place potentially delaying the need for a traditional long-term care bed;
- The continuation of the Ontario Community Support Program to provide seniors and people with disabilities with meals, medicines and other essentials;
- An additional $380 million for parents through another round of payments of $200/child up to 12 years old ($250 for those with special needs up to 21 years old) to assist with costs related to COVID-19, such as technology for online learning;
- An additional $680 million for increased broadband and cellular access in rural, remote and northern regions;
- A previously announced shift to consumer choice time-of-use or tiered pricing for electricity rates as of November 1, 2020, and
- An additional $1.8 billion over two years for the Support for People and Jobs Fund to remain responsive to emerging needs and continue to provide support for people during the pandemic.
Please contact our Government Relations Co-ordinator Dillon Waldron. email@example.com.