daily: Monday, March 9

Will the budget address housing affordability?
By TVO Current Affairs - Published on Mar 09, 2020
File photo of Ontario Premier Doug Ford and Finance Minister Rod Phillips. (Cole Burston/CP)



Good morning, Ontario.

Here's what we're following

Financial support coming for Canadians quarantined due to coronavirus

Federal Finance Minister Bill Morneau is expected to provide details this week on support for Canadians who have been quarantined in an effort to slow the spread of COVID-19, CBC News reports. “We have the capacity to both help businesses if they go through challenges, if that happens, or individuals if they find themselves either having to be away from work for a short period of time or a longer period of time," he said on Friday during a speech at the Canadian Club in Toronto.

NDP puts spotlight on transit funding at Queen’s Park

The New Democrats are scheduled to put forward a motion today in the legislature that focuses on the government’s transit policies. The motion calls on the province to reverse its plan to cut a subsidy that provides discounted fares to people who use both GO Transit and Toronto’s transit system on the same trip. The subsidy expires at the end of March. The motion also demands the province restore a 50-per-cent operating subsidy to municipal transit agencies. That 50-50 funding formula was scrapped by the Mike Harris Tories in 1998.

Ministers expected to hint at province’s plans in upcoming speeches

On Tuesday, Ontario Finance Minister Rod Phillips speaks to the Empire Club of Canada. Observers will be watching to see if he gives any hints as to what to expect in the provincial budget that he is scheduled to release on March 25. Then, on Thursday, Treasury Board President Peter Bethlenfalvy talks to the Economic Club of Canada on “changing the culture of government.” Bethlenfalvy will lay out his “smart initiatives,” which are efforts to make government services more user-friendly.

Watch now

First Contact: Episode 2

The series continues with a visit to Muskrat Dam, one of several fly-in reserves in northern Ontario that suffer from heightened poverty and lack of infrastructure. The visiting non-Indigenous group, unfamiliar with many issues affecting Indigenous communities in Canada, learns why relocating isn’t an option for the people whose families have lived there for generations.

A Better Man

Twenty-two years ago, 18-year-old Attiya Khan fled from her ex-boyfriend Steve, who'd been abusing her daily. In this documentary, she meets with Steve to find out whether he will take responsibility for his violent actions all those years ago. The film offers a fresh and nuanced look at the healing process and reveals what can happen when men take responsibility for the abuse they have inflicted.

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What the Tory budget needs: Higher taxes on houses


As Ontario’s Progressive Conservative government gets ready to deliver its budget on March 25, John Michael McGrath considers higher taxes on houses a priority. “Policies to get more homes built faster are good, and necessary, but the government also needs to look at some ways to put up speed bumps for home prices before they accelerate out of control (if they haven’t started doing that already). The obvious solution is some form of new taxation to dissuade speculators,” he writes. For more on housing-affordability challenges in Ontario and around the world, explore TVO’s new documentary series, The Housing Gap.

Tonight on TVO

7 p.m. — Digging for Britain: North

Archeologists in the country’s north find Roman objects abandoned during a British rebellion, traces of the lost Iona monastery, and a weapons stash belonging to a wealthy Bronze Age warrior.

8 p.m. — The Agenda:  Overlooked women

There are countless women in history whose accomplishments were overlooked and forgotten. We’ll look at why women and their stories have been largely ignored by historians and learn about the new movement seeking to redress that. Joining The Agenda are Mona Halpern, a Western University associate history professor; and Pamela Sugiman, dean of Ryerson University’s Faculty of Arts.

9 p.m. — Extraordinary Women: Maria Montessori

In a remarkable life spanning eight decades, Maria Montessori challenged convention to pioneer a radical system of education that focused on the child as an independent learner. Her innovative approach spread to all corners of the world, affecting the way millions of students were educated. Nearly 70 years after her death, there are approximately 500 Montessori schools in Canada.

From the archive

June 15, 2003 — Tony Clement on his government’s handling of SARS 

In a panel discussion that includes Tony Clement, then the Progressive Conservative health minister, this 2003 episode of Fourth Reading reviews Ontario’s handling of the SARS outbreak. At the time of filming, the province had launched a SARS review panel, and Clement speaks to its importance. “We all want to know how this outbreak occurred. What were the circumstances that contributed to the spread of SARS — mostly in our hospital system? Are there things that we can do in terms of our internal communication and our internal organization and management of these kind of issues that will be better handled in the future?” he said.

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