Today, the Windsor-Essex Regional Chamber of Commerce (WERCC) in partnership with the Ontario Chamber of Commerce (OCC), formally released its 2017 pre-budget submission containing recommendations to the Ontario legislature as it looks to begin its spring 2017 legislative session. The submission outlines 13 specific recommendations for Queen’s Park to adopt in order to restore fiscal balance and spur economic growth.
Some of the key recommendations for the Windsor-Essex Region are:
1. Eliminate the deficit in 2017/2018. Ontario’s net debt of $315 billion debt makes our province heavily exposed to rising interest rates and economic slowdowns.
2. Expand Broadband access, particularly especially in rural areas like Essex County as identified in our Small Business: Too Big to Ignore Campaign.
3. One time $30 million funding for Connecting Links Road Program to help municipalities pay for provincial highways travelling through communities.
As signalled last week in the OCC’s Ontario Economic Report, businesses are lacking confidence in Ontario and are therefore holding onto cash rather than expanding production or investing. “This indicates that industry sees the Ontario economy as high-risk,” said Matt Marchand, President & CEO, WERCC.
“The Government of Ontario must ensure that it addresses recommendations made by the chamber network to bolster business confidence that allows investment and jobs to flow into Ontario,” added Marchand
Addressing the current fiscal context and achieving a balanced budget is an underlying theme throughout the pre-budget submission. Ontario’s Chamber Network is committed to working with the Ontario Government to ensure the future economic success of the province. The submission is largely comprised of policy recommendations that are supported by resolutions passed by Ontario’s Chamber Network at the OCC’s most recent Annual General Meeting.