Transcript: Question Period: Wednesday, November 20, 2019 | Nov 21, 2019

A still camera shows the Ontario Legislature. A caption on screen reads "Oral questions."

The Speaker stands. He's is in his fifties, clean-shaven, with short light brown hair. He wears a black robe.

He says IT IS NOW TIME FOR ORAL
QUESTIONS AND I RECOGNIZE THE LEADER OF HER MAJESTY'S LOYAL
OPPOSITION.

The caption changes to "Andrea Horwath. NDP. Leader of Her Majesty's Loyal Opposition."

Horwath is in her fifties, with straight blond hair in a bob. She wears a light gray blazer over a pale pink shirt, and a silver pendant necklace.

She says THANK YOU, SPEAKER.
SPEAKER, MY FIRST QUESTION IS TO
THE PREMIER.
YESTERDAY, WE LEARNED THAT AT A
TIME WHEN THE ENTIRE WORLD IS
MOVING TOWARDS RENEWABLE ENERGY,
THE FORD GOVERNMENT IS WASTING
AT LEAST 231 MILLION DOLLARS, AND QUITE
POSSIBLY MORE, TEARING DOWN
CLEAN ENERGY PROJECTS AND PAYING
WIND ENERGY PRODUCERS NOT TO
BUILD RENEWABLE ENERGY.
SO WHY DID THE GOVERNMENT CLAIM
THAT THERE WOULD BE NO COST TO
ONTARIANS WHEN IN FACT RIPPING
UP THESE WIND ENERGY CONTRACTS
IS COSTING AT LEAST
231 MILLION DOLLARS?

[SOME APPLAUSE]

The Speaker says GOVERNMENT HOUSE LEADER.

The Government House Leader says THROUGH MINISTER OF ENERGY.

The Speaker says REFERRED TO THE MINISTER OF ENERGY NORTHERN
DEVELOPMENT AND MINES.

The caption changes to "Honourable Greg Rickford. PC. Minister of Energy, Northern Development and Mines."

Rickford is in his early fifties, clean-shaven, with short gray hair. He wears a gray suit, white shirt, and brown tie.

He says THANK YOU, MR. SPEAKER.
ONE OF OUR FIRST ACTIONS AS
GOVERNMENT WAS TO WIND DOWN OVER
750 CONTRACTS TO THE TUNE OF A
NET PRESENT VALUE OF
790 MILLION DOLLARS, ALMOST A BILLION DOLLARS, MR. SPEAKER, THAT
COMMUNITIES DIDN'T WANT AND THE
GRID DIDN'T NEED.
MR. SPEAKER, WE REPEALED THE
GREEN ENERGY ACT TO ENSURE THAT
EXPENSIVE CONTRACTS, ENERGY
PROJECTS THAT WOULD BE FORCED ON
OUR UNWILLING COMMUNITIES WOULD
NOT BE A BURDEN ON OUR SYSTEM.
THIS IS NOT A COST THAT THE
RATEPAYER WILL BEAR.
THEY APPRECIATE THE FACT THAT
HE'S TAKEN SIGNIFICANT STEPS IN
AN EFFORT TO REDUCE THE
RATEPAYER, MR. SPEAKER.
EVERY SINGLE TIME THE NDP HAD AN
OPPORTUNITY TO WORK WITH US AND
REDUCE THOSE RATES, MR. SPEAKER,
THEY VOTED AGAINST IT.
THANK YOU.

[SOME APPLAUSE]

The Speaker says SUPPLEMENTARY QUESTION.

Horwath says WELL, IT ALL COMES OUT OF THE
SAME POCKET, SPEAKER, AND THE
FAMILIES OF ONTARIO DESERVE MORE
AFFORDABILITY WITH ELECTRICITY,
NOT LESS, WHICH IS WHAT THIS
GOVERNMENT IS PROVIDING THEM.
LESS AFFORDABILITY.
GOVERNMENT SOURCES SAY THAT THE
COST OF SCRAPPING THESE
RENEWABLE ENERGY PROJECTS COULD
EXCEED 231 MILLION DOLLARS.
IN FACT THE FULL COST OF TEARING
DOWN THE WHITE PINES WIND
PROJECT STILL HAS NOT YET BEEN
FINALIZED.
MEDIA REPORTS INDICATE THE COST
OF CANCELLING THAT PROJECT ALONE
WILL RUN AS HIGH AS
141 MILLION DOLLARS.
NOW, I CAN REMEMBER WHEN THE
LIBERALS SAT WHERE THE FORD
GOVERNMENT DID AND LOW BALLED
THE COST OF THE GAS PLANT.

The Speaker says ORDER.

Horwath says CAN THE GOVERNMENT GUARANTEE
THEIR 231 MILLION DOLLARS NUMBER WILL
NOT CLIMB ANY HIGHER?

The Speaker says MINISTER OF
ENERGY.

Rickford says MR. SPEAKER, ISN'T IT
INTERESTING TO HEAR THE CHAIRMAN
OF THAT PARTY TALK ABOUT WHERE
MONEY COMES FROM.
I THINK THIS PARTY HERE HAS DONE
A LOT, MR. SPEAKER, TO TAKE CARE
OF THE TAXPAYERS' DOLLARS AND
MAKE SURE THAT THEY GET THE BEST
VALUE FROM GOVERNMENT SERVICES
AND PROGRAMS.
BUT IF IN FACT SHE WAS HERE,
MR. SPEAKER, LET'S RATTLE OFF
SOME INTERESTING STATISTICS
HERE.
NOVEMBER 1ST, 2009, 5.5 percent
INCREASE.
NOVEMBER 1ST, 2010, 6.25 percent
INCREASE.
NOVEMBER 1ST, 2011, 8.7 percent
INCREASE.
TO THE RATEPAYER.
IT ACTUALLY GOES ON AND ON RIGHT
UP UNTIL, OH, ABOUT 2018,
MR. SPEAKER, WHEN A GOVERNMENT
TOOK OVER AND TOOK SWIFT ACTION
TO TAKE PROJECTS OFF THAT WERE
STRUCTURALLY CAUSING THIS SYSTEM
TO BE COMPLEX AND UNAFFORDABLE
FOR RATEPAYERS, THAT SENIOR
CITIZENS, SMALL BUSINESSES,
FAMILIES, MR. SPEAKER, AND MAJOR
INDUSTRIES THAT EMPLOY THOUSANDS
OF PEOPLE.
THANK YOU, MR. SPEAKER.

[SOME APPLAUSE]

The Speaker says FINAL SUPPLEMENTARY.

Horwath says WELL, SPEAKER, THE MINISTER
RESPONSIBLE IS CONVENIENTLY
FORGETTING THAT HIS FORD
GOVERNMENT PROMISED A 12 percent
DECREASE IN ELECTRICITY RATES,
NOT A 2 percent INCREASE IN ELECTRICITY
RATES.
BUT YOU KNOW WHAT, IT HAS BEEN
MORE THAN A YEAR SINCE THE
PREMIER PROUDLY ANNOUNCED THAT
HE WOULD START TEARING DOWN
CLEAN ENERGY PROJECTS, EVEN
WHILE THE REST OF THE WORLD WAS
RUSHING TO BUILD THEM.
A YEAR LATER, THE GOVERNMENT
STILL CLAIMS THEY DON'T KNOW THE
FULL COST OF THIS MOVE.
SO WHEN WILL THE PUBLIC GET AN
ANSWER, SPEAKER?
CAN THE FORD GOVERNMENT MAYBE
SET A DATE TODAY AS TO WHEN
PEOPLE WILL EXPECT TO KNOW
EXACTLY HOW MUCH THE RIPPING UP
OF CONTRACTS BY THIS GOVERNMENT
IS GOING TO COST?

The Speaker says MINISTER.

Rickford says MR. SPEAKER, WE WILL NOT BE
DETERRED FROM OUR EFFORTS TO
CONTINUE TO ENSURE THAT THIS
SYSTEM, OUR ENERGY SYSTEM, IS
SIMPLER, LESS COMPLEX,
MR. SPEAKER, AND MORE
AFFORDABLE.
WE'VE HEARD IT FROM JUST ABOUT
EVERY MAJOR INDUSTRY AND SMALL
BUSINESS YOU CAN THINK OF.
WE HEARD IT, MR. SPEAKER, OUR
CONSTITUENTS ARE SHOWING US
THESE PEAK DEMAND COSTS OF THE
PRICE PER KILOWATT OF HOUR.
ISN'T THAT INTERESTING,
MR. SPEAKER?
THAT IS BORNE FROM THE INCREASES
THAT I JUST RATTLED OFF, AND I
CAN RATTLE OFF MORE,
MR. SPEAKER.
HERE'S WHAT I KNOW ABOUT IT.
THE NDP SUPPORTED THE
IDEOLOGICALLY-DRIVEN PREVIOUS
GOVERNMENT EVERY STEP OF THE
WAY, MR. SPEAKER.
WE ALREADY HAVE A GREEN ENERGY
SYSTEM HERE IN ONTARIO, 92 percent OF
OUR ENERGY SYSTEM IS GST GHG-FR.
IT EMPLOYS THOUSANDS ACROSS THE
PROVINCE.
WE HAVE AN EXTRAORDINARY
OPPORTUNITY TO BUILD THAT OUT,
MR. SPEAKER, CONTINUE TO REMAIN
COMMITTED TO GREEN ENERGY,
MR. SPEAKER.
THAT'S AFFORDABLE AND
COMPETITIVE WITH OTHER
JURISDICTIONS IN CANADA.
AND NORTH AMERICA.
THANK YOU, MR. SPEAKER.

[SOME APPLAUSE]

The Speaker says THE NEXT QUESTION.
LEADER OF THE OPPOSITION.

Horwath says THE NEXT QUESTION IS ALSO FOR
THE PREMIER, SPEAKER.
WHEN THE PREVIOUS LIBERAL
GOVERNMENT CANCELLED TWO GAS
PLANTS, THEY HAD THE SAME
230 MILLION DOLLARS OPENING ESTIMATES
AS THE FORD GOVERNMENT NOW HAS.
BUT THANKS TO THE AUDITOR
GENERAL, ALL ONTARIANS LEARNED
THAT 230 MILLION DOLLARS UNDER THE
LIBERALS WAS ACTUALLY OVER A
BILLION DOLLARS.
AT THAT TIME, CONSERVATIVE
MEMBERS, INCLUDING MANY WHO NOW
SIT IN THE CONSERVATIVE
GOVERNMENT'S CABINET, CONSIDERED
THE AUDITOR'S NUMBERS TO BE
DEFINITIVE.
ANY MEMBER OF THE FORD
GOVERNMENT CABINET HAS THE POWER
TO ASK THE AUDITOR TO REVIEW
THESE EXPENSES.
WILL THE FORD GOVERNMENT TAKE
ACTION TODAY TO ENSURE
TRANSPARENCY AND ASK THE AUDITOR
GENERAL TO CONDUCT A COMPLETE
REVIEW OF THE TOTAL COST OF THESE CANCELLED CONTRACTS?

[SOME APPLAUSE]

The Speaker says MINISTER OF
ENERGY, NORTHERN DEVELOPMENT AND
MINES.

Rickford says IT'S INTERESTING THAT THE MEMBER OPPOSITE WOULD INTRODUCE
THE AUDITOR GENERAL'S ROLE IN
ALL OF THIS.
IT WAS IN FACT THE AUDITOR
GENERAL WHO SAID THAT THESE
INCREASES THAT I HAD MENTIONED
EARLIER, MR. SPEAKER, AND AS I
SAID THERE'S MORE, 8.9 percent, 8.2 percent,
22 percent, MR. SPEAKER, IT'S
INCREDIBLE, THAT WAS IN 2014.
THE THING IS, NOBODY KNEW ABOUT
IT.
NOBODY KNEW THE SECRET PLAN THAT
WAS HATCHED OVER THERE TO BUILD
AN EXPENSIVE PROJECTS,
MR. SPEAKER, THAT WOULD MAKE OUR
ENERGY SYSTEM MORE COMPLEX,
MR. SPEAKER, AND WAY MORE
EXPENSIVE.
750 PROJECTS, MR. SPEAKER, HAD
NOT REACHED THEIR MILESTONES TO
THE TUNE OF ALMOST A BILLION DOLLARS IN NET PRESENT VALUE.
THAT DOESN'T INCLUDE,
MR. SPEAKER, ANY INFLATIONARY
COSTS AGAINST THAT PRICE, AND
THE STRUCTURAL SUPPORT THAT THAT
KIND OF ENERGY WOULD CONTINUE TO
MAKE OUR SYSTEM THE MOST COMPLEX
AND THE MOST EXPENSIVE IN NORTH
AMERICA.

The Speaker says RESPONSE.

Rickford says THOSE ARE FACT, MR. SPEAKER.

The Speaker says SUPPLEMENTARY.

Horwath says WELL, SPEAKER, AT A TIME WHEN
WE SHOULD BE INVESTING IN
RENEWABLE ENERGY AND RENEWABLE
PROJECTS, THIS GOVERNMENT IS NOT
ONLY TEARING THEM DOWN, THEY'RE
SQUANDERING HUNDREDS AND
HUNDREDS OF MILLIONS OF
TAXPAYERS' DOLLARS THAT COULD
HAVE BUILT NEW HOSPITALS AND
LONG-TERM CARE BEDS OR TAKEN
LEAD OUT OF THE WATER IN SCHOOLS
AND DAYCARE CENTRES.
THE LEAST THE GOVERNMENT SHOULD
DO NOW IS GIVE THE PEOPLE OF
ONTARIO AN HONEST ACCOUNTING OF THEIR BOONDOGGLE.
WILL THE FORD GOVERNMENT CALL IN
THE AUDITOR AND, IF NOT, WHY
NOT?

[SOME APPLAUSE]

The Speaker says MINISTER.

Rickford says MR. SPEAKER, THE AUDITOR WAS
CALLED IN, AND SHE MADE SOME
PRETTY IMPRESSIVE OBSERVATIONS
ABOUT THE PREVIOUS PLAN THAT WAS
SUPPORTED BY THE ANTI-NUCLEAR
DEMOCRATIC PARTY EVERY STEP OF THE WAY, MR. SPEAKER.
THE FACT OF THE MATTER IS THAT
WE HAVE AN ENERGY SYSTEM THAT
EMPLOYS TENS OF THOUSANDS OF
HIGHLY-TRAINED AND
HIGHLY-SKILLED WORKERS AT A
COMPETITIVE COST, SOMEWHERE IN
THE 7 CENTS PRICE PER KILOWATT
PER HOUR, MR. SPEAKER.
NOW, THAT'S COMPETITIVE WITH
QUEBEC WHERE I WAS YESTERDAY,
WHO'S IN FULL-BLOWN COMPETITION
WITH US IN THE MINING SECTOR,
MR. SPEAKER.
IT'S DIFFICULT TO COMPETE WHEN
THE NDP AND THE LIBERAL PARTY,
THE FORMER GOVERNMENT, WERE IN
CAHOOTS TOGETHER TO BUILD THE
MOST EXPENSIVE SYSTEM IN NORTH
AMERICA.
THAT SYSTEM, MR. SPEAKER, HAS
BEEN TOLD TO US OVER AND OVER,
AND IT'S THE MOST COMPLEX AND
THE MOST EXPENSIVE, MR. SPEAKER.
THE NDP ARE CONVENIENTLY STILL
ON THAT FACT-FREE DIET THAT THEY
STARTED OUT LAST DECEMBER,
MR. SPEAKER.
LET'S BE CLEAR, PEOPLE WANTED
A...

The Speaker says THANK YOU.
THE FINAL SUPPLEMENTARY.

Horwath says WELL, SPEAKER, IT LOOKS LIKE
THE GOVERNMENT SIDE DOESN'T LIKE
TO WANT TO TALK ABOUT THEIR
BOONDOGGLE, ALTHOUGH THEY TALK A
LOT ABOUT THE LIBERAL
BOONDOGGLE.
BUT I'M ACTUALLY TALKING ABOUT
THE CONSERVATIVE BOONDOGGLE THAT
IS UNFOLDING RIGHT BEFORE OUR
EYES AS WE SIT IN THIS CHAMBER.
YOU KNOW, THE CONSERVATIVES USED
TO BE UPSET ABOUT THE GAS PLANT
CONTRACTS THAT WERE TORN UP BY
THE LIBERALS.
THEY SHOUTED ABOUT THE SCANDAL,
THEY SHOUTED FROM THE ROOFTOPS
ABOUT...

The Speaker says STOP THE
CLOCK.
OKAY.
THAT'S IT.
I'M GOING TO START... I'M GOING
TO START CALLING MEMBERS OUT BY
NAME AND THEN I'M GOING TO START
WARNING.
AND WE KNOW THAT THAT LEADS TO
THE NEXT STEP.
I APOLOGIZE TO THE LEADER OF THE
OPPOSITION.

The Government House Leader says POINT OF ORDER.

The Speaker says POINT OF ORDER.
THE GOVERNMENT HOUSE LEADER.

The Government House Leader says THANK YOU, MR. SPEAKER.
MR. SPEAKER...

The Speaker says THE CLOCK IS
STOPPED.
I'M GOING TO LISTEN.

The Government House Leader is in his late forties, clean-shaven, with short gray hair. He wears a gray suit, white shirt and blue gundy tie.

The Government House Leader says THANK YOU, MR. SPEAKER.
MR. SPEAKER, INADVERTENTLY AND I
APOLOGIZE TODAY WAS... WE WERE
SUPPOSED TO BE OBSERVING A
MOMENT OF SILENCE FOR
TRANSGENDER REMEMBRANCE DAY
BEFORE QUESTION PERIOD AND
INADVERTENTLY THAT DID NOT
HAPPEN.
I SEEK UNANIMOUS CONSENT IN
ORDER FOR US TO DO IT right NOW TO STOP THE CLOCK SO THAT WE
MIGHT DO THAT AND CONTINUE WITH
QUESTION PERIOD.

The Speaker consults with a person seen from behind.

Then, he rises and says WE NORMALLY DON'T LISTEN TO POINTS OF ORDER
BUT I RECOGNIZED OR SENSED THERE
MIGHT BE SOMETHING SERIOUS THAT
WAS GOING TO BE RAISED BUT I
THINK IT WOULD BE MOST
APPROPRIATE THAT WE DEAL WITH
THAT POINT OF ORDER AFTER
QUESTION PERIOD AND OBSERVE THEN
IF THE HOUSE AGREES A MOMENT OF
SILENCE AT THE END OF QUESTION PERIOD.

[INTERJECTIONS]

The Speaker says OKAY, I'LL LISTEN TO THE
GOVERNMENT HOUSE LEADER AGAIN.

The caption changes to "Honourable Paul A. Calandra. PC. Government House Leader."

Calandra says SPEAKER, I APPRECIATE THAT
THIS IS NOT NORMAL AND I
APOLOGIZE TO THE ENTIRE HOUSE
FOR THE MIX-UP TODAY.
I TAKE RESPONSIBILITY FOR THAT.
I KNOW THIS IS COMPLETELY NOT A
NORMAL COURSE OF ACTION BUT IT'S
BEEN RAISED TO ME THAT THE
COMMUNITY WILL NOT BE HERE
TOWARDS THE END OF QUESTION
PERIOD AND THAT THERE PERHAPS IS
A LEGISLATIVE REQUIREMENT IT BE
DONE BEFORE QUESTION PERIOD SO I
BEG FORGIVENESS OF THE HOUSE FOR
THIS INTRUSION.
QUESTION PERIOD WILL CONTINUE
FOR THE FULL LENGTH OF TIME IF
YOU'RE IN AGREEMENT,
MR. SPEAKER, BUT I ASK FOR THIS
UNUSUAL GIVEN THE IMPORTANCE OF
THIS AND AGAIN, I APOLOGIZE TO
THE HOUSE AND I APOLOGIZE TO THE
COMMUNITY FOR THIS.
BUT I AGAIN SEEK JUST A MOMENT,
MR. SPEAKER, IF WE COULD DO
THAT.

The Speaker says SO THE
GOVERNMENT HOUSE LEADER IS
SEEKING UNANIMOUS CONSENT OF THE
HOUSE TO OBSERVE A MOMENT OF
SILENCE.
AGREED?

Horwath says SPEAKER, COULD I JUST ASK
THAT WHEN WE HAVE THIS MOMENT OF
SILENCE, THAT IN THE MIDDLE OF
QUESTION PERIOD, THAT I BEGIN
FROM THE BEGINNING OF MY...

The Speaker says OF COURSE, NOT
A PROBLEM.
I ASSURE YOU OF THAT.
AGREED.
I ASK THE MEMBERS TO RISE TO
OBSERVE THE MOMENT OF SILENCE.

All the Members rise and remain silent for one minute, as do the visitors and every person in the room.

The Speaker says THANK YOU VERY MUCH.
I ASK THE MEMBERS TO TAKE THEIR
SEATS.
SO WE'RE GOING TO RECOGNIZE THE LEADER OF THE OPPOSITION FINAL
SUPPLEMENTARY AND YOU CAN START
AT THE BEGINNING OF YOUR
QUESTION.

Horwath says SPEAKER, I ASKED THAT I COULD
START MY QUESTION FROM THE
BEGINNING, I WAS IN A BIT OF A
DISCUSSION HERE ABOUT WHAT THIS
GOVERNMENT'S DOING AND THAT WAS
NOW INTERRUPTED BY, BY THE WAY,
THE MOMENT OF SILENCE FOR THE
THE PAS DAY OF REMEMBRANCE WHO
THE PEOPLE ARE AWARE OF WHY WE
HAD A MOMENT OF SILENCE, BUT IT
IS NOT APPROPRIATE TO BREAK MY
QUESTION PERIOD QUESTIONS BY A
MOMENT OF SILENCE.
IT'S COMPLETELY...

The Speaker says I'M GOING TO
RECOGNIZE THE LEADER OF THE
OPPOSITION FIRST SUPPLEMENTARY
OF HER SECOND QUESTION.
START THE CLOCK.
I RECOGNIZE THE LEADER OF THE
OPPOSITION.

Horwath says AS THE TIME... SORRY, AT A
TIME WHEN WE SHOULD BE INVESTING
IN RENEWABLE ENERGY PROJECTS
THIS GOVERNMENT IS NOT ONLY
TEARING THEM DOWN, THEY'RE
SQUANDERING HUNDREDS OF MILLIONS
OF TAXPAYERS' DOLLARS THAT COULD
HAVE BUILT NEW HOSPITALS,
LONG-TERM CARE BEDS OR TAKEN THE
LEAD OUT OF THE WATER OF SCHOOLS
AND CHILD CARE CENTRES.
THE LEAST THAT THIS GOVERNMENT
COULD DO NOW IS GIVE THE PEOPLE
OF ONTARIO AN HONEST ACCOUNTING
OF THIS BOONDOGGLE.
WILL THE FORD GOVERNMENT CALL IN
THE AUDITOR AND, IF NOT, WHY
NOT?

The Speaker says MINISTER OF
ENERGY.

Rickford says MR. SPEAKER, THE PROVINCE...
THE GOVERNMENT OF ONTARIO
CONTINUES TO MAKE SIGNIFICANT
INVESTMENTS IN GREEN ENERGY.
THAT'S WHY, MR. SPEAKER, WE HAVE
SOME OF THE LARGEST
INFRASTRUCTURE PROJECTS IN THE
HISTORY CERTAINLY OF THIS
PROVINCE AND CANADA FOR SURE.
REFURBISHING OUR NUCLEAR
FACILITIES, ENSURING THAT WE
HAVE A GREEN SOURCE OF ENERGY
THAT'S COMPETITIVE, MR. SPEAKER,
THAT COMES IN AROUND SEVEN,
SEVEN-AND-A-HALF CENTS PRICE PER
KILOWATT, MR. SPEAKER, NOT THE
17 TO 50 CENTS EMBEDDED IN THESE
CONTRACTS, MR. SPEAKER, FOR WIND
AND SOLAR POWER THAT MADE OUR
SYSTEM MORE COMPLEX,
MR. SPEAKER, AND RECOGNIZED FOR
ALL THE WRONG REASONS AS BEING
THE MOST EXPENSIVE ENERGY SYSTEM
IN NORTH AMERICA, MR. SPEAKER.
THOSE ARE FACT.
ASK RATEPAYERS THAT QUESTION.
THEY NOW UNDERSTAND IT.
THEY'RE PAYING CLOSER ATTENTION
TO THEIR BILLS BECAUSE THE
SUBSIDY WHICH WE NOW KNOW WAS
DEBT, THE AUDITOR GENERAL ASKED
US TO PUT CLEARLY ON THE ABOUT I
WILL BILL SO
PEOPLE OF ONTARIO COULD
UNDERSTAND IT BETTER,
MR. SPEAKER, IS THERE FOR ALL TO
SEE.
WE'RE GOING TO CONTINUE TO TAKE
THE RIGHT STEPS TO REDUCE COSTS
AND FIND EFFICIENCIES IN OUR
SYSTEM TO REDUCE THE RATES FOR
FAMILIES AND BUSINESSES PAYING,
MR. SPEAKER.
THANK YOU.

[SOME APPLAUSE]

The Speaker says THE FINAL SUPPLEMENTARY.

Horwath says WELL, SPEAKER, YOU KNOW, MY
QUESTION IS ACTUALLY ABOUT THE
PREVIOUS LIBERAL BOONDOGGLE ON
TEARING UP ENERGY CONTRACTS AND
ITS STRIKING RESEMBLANCE TO THE
CURRENT CONSERVATIVE BOONDOGGLE
OF TEARING UP ENERGY CONTRACTS.
THE CONSERVATIVES USED TO BE
UPSET ABOUT THE GAS PLANT
CONTRACTS THAT WERE RIPPED UP BY
THE LIBERALS.
THEY SHOUTED FROM THE ROOFTOPS
ABOUT THAT SCANDAL, BUT NOW THE
TABLES HAVE TURNED AND THEY'RE
DOING THE EXACT SAME THING.
RIPPING UP CONTRACTS FOR
RENEWABLE ENERGY FOR ONTARIANS
AND NOT ONLY LEAVING FAMILIES TO
PAY THE BILLS BUT REFUSING TO
TELL THEM HOW MUCH THIS IS GOING
TO COST THEM.
THE FORD GOVERNMENT IS NOW
PAYING COMPANIES MILLIONS OF
DOLLARS NOT TO PRODUCE CLEAN
ENERGY.
SO WILL THEY, AT THE VERY LEAST,
ALLOW THE AUDITOR GENERAL TO
TELL US HOW MUCH WE'RE ALL GOING
TO BE PAYING FOR THEIR ENERGY
BOONDOGGLE?

The Speaker says MINISTER OF
ENERGY REPLY.

Rickford says NOT EVERY DAY I GET AN
OPPORTUNITY, MR. SPEAKER, OVER
THE COURSE OF MY CAREER TO SPEAK
TO THE BOONDOGGLE OF A PREVIOUS
GOVERNMENT THAT THAT PARTY
SUPPORTED.
SO I WILL.

The Speaker says ORDER.

Rickford says I'LL SPEAK TO IT WITH
CERTAINTY.
LET'S JUST CONTINUE WITH
STATISTICS HERE, THEY'RE
COMPELLING.
I THINK I STOPPED AT 2012.
IN 2013, ON NOVEMBER 1ST,
THERE WAS AN 8.9 percent INCREASE.
ON NOVEMBER 1ST, 2014,
MR. SPEAKER, AN 8.2 percent INCREASE.
NOVEMBER 1ST, MR. SPEAKER, AND
YOU'RE SITTING DOWN, 2015, WAIT
FOR IT, A 22 percent INCREASE IN WHAT
RATEPAYERS PAY.
MR. SPEAKER, WE TOOK
APPROPRIATE, RESPONSIBLE ACTION
TO DEAL WITH MORE THAN 750
PROJECTS THAT COMMUNITY DIDN'T
WANT AND THE GRID DIDN'T NEED.
THEY WERE COSTING US,
MR. SPEAKER, ANYWHERE FROM 17 TO
50 CENTS PRICE PER KILOWATT PER
HOUR, MR. SPEAKER.
WE WON'T STAND FOR THAT.
RATEPAYERS CERTAINLY WON'T STAND
FOR THAT, MR. SPEAKER, AND WE
STAND BY THOSE CHANGES AND WE'LL
CONTINUE TO DO THE RIGHT THING.

The Speaker says THANK YOU VERY
MUCH.
THE NEXT question. The member for Davenport.

The caption changes to "Marit Stiles. NDP. Davenport."

Stiles is in her forties, with feathered, shoulder-length blond hair. She wears a purple blazer over a black shirt.

She says THANK YOU, MR. SPEAKER.
MY QUESTION IS TO THE ACTING
PREMIER.
WHEN IT COMES TO BARGAINING,
THIS GOVERNMENT HAS A LOT TO SAY
BUT THERE'S NOT BEEN A LOT OF
ACTION.
IN THE LAST 24 HOURS, TEACHERS
HAVE EXPRESSED EXTRAORDINARY
FRUSTRATION AT THE GOVERNMENT
WHO SEEM DETERMINED TO PICK A
FIGHT.
THEY ALSO HAVE PLUNGED OUR
BARGAINING INTO CHAOS JUST LIKE
THEY PLUNGED OUR CLASSROOMS INTO
CHAOS.
SCORING POINTS AT PRESS
CONFERENCES IS NOT GOING TO UNDO
THE DAMAGE THIS GOVERNMENT HAS
CAUSED TO OUR SCHOOLS AND IT
CERTAINLY ISN'T GOING TO GET A
DEAL AT THE BARGAINING TABLE.
WHY IS THIS GOVERNMENT SO
DETERMINED TO PICK A FIGHT?

The Speaker says DEPUTY
PREMIER.

The Deputy Premier says MINISTER OF EDUCATION.

The Speaker says DEFER TO
MINISTER OF EDUCATION.

The caption changes to "Honourable Stephen Lecce. PC. Minister of Education."

Lecce is in his thirties, with short dark hair and a stubble. He wears a blue suit, white shirt, and spotted blue tie.

He says THANK YOU, MR. SPEAKER.
MR. SPEAKER, THIS GOVERNMENT IS
DETERMINED TO GET A GOOD DEAL
FOR OUR STUDENTS, FOR OUR
TEACHERS AND FOR THE PARENTS OF
THIS PROVINCE.
THAT IS WHY, MR. SPEAKER,
YESTERDAY, I ASKED OUR UNION
PARTNERS, OUR TEACHING UNION
PARTNERS TO CONSIDER SERIOUSLY
MEDIATION AS A MECHANISM TO GET
A DEAL.
AND I THINK WHAT IS IMPORTANT IS
THAT WE TURN TO THE SAME
APPROACH WITH CUPE, WITH OUR
EDUCATION WORKERS, JUST A MONTH
AGO, AND IT WORKED.
AT THE END OF THE DAY,
MR. SPEAKER, THE PREMIER AND
THIS GOVERNMENT IS ABSOLUTELY
COMMITTED TO A RESOLUTION THAT
KEEPS KIDS IN CLASS AND IMPROVES
EDUCATION FOR EVERY STUDENT IN
THIS PROVINCE.

The Speaker says SUPPLEMENTARY QUESTION.

Stiles says THANK YOU, MR. SPEAKER.
WELL, THE MINISTER DOESN'T SEEM
TO KNOW WHERE WE'RE AT IN THE
BARGAINING PROCESS BUT AGAIN FOR
THE ACTING PREMIER, THE MINISTER
HAS ALREADY DELAYED BARGAINING
BECAUSE HE'D RATHER SEE HIMSELF
ON TELEVISION THAN KIDS IN THE
CLASSROOM.
IT IS NO SURPRISE THAT THIS
GOVERNMENT IS GOING OUT OF THEIR
WAY TO MAKE THINGS WORSE AT THE
BARGAINING TABLE.
THEY'RE THE ONES WHO MADE THINGS
WORSE IN OUR CLASSROOMS TO BEGIN
WITH.
TEACHERS ARE SAYING, AND I
QUOTE, YOUR ACTIONS HAVE THROWN
NEGOTIATIONS...

The Speaker says STOP THE
CLOCK.
ORDER.
I APOLOGIZE TO THE MEMBER FOR DAVENPORT.
START THE CLOCK.
SHE CAN PLACE HER QUESTION.

Stiles says THANK YOU, MR. SPEAKER.
I THINK I HIT A NERVE THERE.
AS I WAS SAYING, TEACHERS ARE
SAYING, AND I QUOTE, YOUR
ACTIONS, THIS GOVERNMENT'S
ACTIONS, MR. SPEAKER, HAVE
THROWN NEGOTIATIONS INTO
COMPLETE CHAOS.
WE ARE DAYS AWAY FROM POTENTIAL
WORK ACTION.
FAMILIES ARE WONDERING WHAT
THEY'RE GOING TO DO AND HOW
THEY'RE GOING TO MAKE ENDS MEET.
SPEAKER, THERE'S NO ONE ELSE IN
THE GOVERNMENT TO BLAME BUT
THEMSELVES AGAIN.
WHEN ARE YOU GOING TO DO THE
RIGHT THING, REVERSE THESE
WRECKLESS CUTS AND STOP THE
ATTACKS ON OUR SCHOOLS?

[SOME APPLAUSE]

The Speaker says MINISTER OF
EDUCATION REPLY.

Lecce says MR. SPEAKER, THE GOVERNMENT
IS GOING TO CONTINUE TO BE A
REASONABLE STUDENTCENTRIC FORCE
AT THE TABLE AND THAT IS WHY...

The Speaker says ORDER.

Lecce says IT IS WHY WE ARE ABLE TO
ACHIEVE A DEAL WITH CUPE ONE
MONTH AGO WHICH KEPT KIDS IN THE
CLASSROOM IN THIS PROVINCE.
MR. SPEAKER, WHILE WE DO THOSE
INITIATIVES, WHILE WE TAKE
REASONABLE ACTIONS AT THE TABLE,
WE'RE SEEING AN ESCALATION BY
TEACHERS UNIONS AND THAT IS
REGRETTABLE FOR FAMILIES TO
OBSERVE BECAUSE THEIR CHILDREN
SHOULD NOT, SHOULD NOT HAVE TO
PAY THE PRICE FOR DISAGREEMENT
AT THE TABLE.
MY HOPE IS THROUGH MEDIATION, WE
CAN ACTUALLY PROVIDE A PATHWAY,
A CREDIBLE PATHWAY TO GETTING A
GOOD DEAL FOR OUR PARENTS, FOR
OUR TEACHERS AND MOST
IMPORTANTLY FOR THE STUDENTS OF
COURSE PROVINCE.

The Speaker says NEXT question. The member for Thornhill.

The caption changes to "Gila Martow. PC. Thornhill."

Martow is in her forties, with wavy blond hair to her shoulders. She wears a gray jacket over a black sweater, and black-rimmed glasses.

She says THANK YOU VERY MUCH,
MR. SPEAKER.
AND I HAVE A QUESTION FOR THE
MINISTER OF GOVERNMENT AND
CONSUMER SERVICES.
YESTERDAY, THE MINISTER
INTRODUCED THE BILL THE TRUST IN
REAL ESTATE SERVICES ACT.
THIS BILL IF PASSED BY THE
LEGISLATURE WOULD BRING A
MUCH-NEEDED UPDATE TO THE REAL
ESTATE AND BUSINESS ACT 2002.
STRENGTHENING CONSUMER
PROTECTION AND MODERNIZING RULES
FOR REGISTERED REAL ESTATE
BROKERAGES, BROKERS AND SALES
PERSONS.
MAKING SURE THAT REAL ESTATE
PROFESSIONALS AND BROKERAGES
ACROSS THE PROVINCE ARE TRUSTED
AND ETHICAL IS IMPORTANT IN
GIVING CONSUMERS CONFIDENCE IN
AN OPEN MARKETPLACE.
CAN THE MINISTER ELABORATE ON
THE PROPOSED CHANGES TO THE REAL
ESTATE AND BUSINESS BROKERS ACT?
THANK YOU.

The Speaker says I RECOGNIZE THE MINISTER OF GOVERNMENT AND
consumer SERVICES.

The caption changes to "Honourable Lisa M. Thompson. PC. Minister of Government and Consumer Services."

Thompson is in her forties, with chin-length wavy blond hair. She wears a purple blazer.

She says THANK YOU VERY MUCH,
MR. SPEAKER.
THANK YOU TO THE MEMBER FOR THORNHILL FOR THE GREAT
QUESTION.
I APPRECIATE IT VERY MUCH
BECAUSE WE HAVE HEARD LOUD AND
CLEAR FROM CONSUMERS AND FROM
PROFESSIONALS ALIKE THAT IT WAS
TIME TO REVIEW THE AGED
LEGISLATION, IF YOU WILL, AND
I'M VERY EXCITED TO HIGHLIGHT
OUR GOVERNMENT'S TRUST IN REAL
ESTATE SERVICES ACT WHICH
FOCUSES ON FIVE KEY AREAS.
THE MAIN ONE BEING ENHANCING
CONSUMER PROTECTION.
THIS MEANS ENSURING CONSUMERS
HAVE ACCESS TO BETTER
INFORMATION SUCH AS GETTING THE
RIGHT DISCLOSURES FROM THE REAL
ESTATE PROFESSIONALS AS WELL AS
BROKERAGES.
AND NUMBER TWO, WE'RE INCREASING
PROFESSIONALISM AMONG REAL
ESTATE PROFESSIONALS AND
BROKERAGES BY ENSURING THEY HAVE
A CLEAR SET OF RULES AND ETHICAL
REQUIREMENTS TO FOLLOW.
WE'RE ALSO ENSURING EFFICIENT
AND EFFECTIVE REGULATION IN THE
REAL ESTATE SECTOR AFTER BEING
IGNORED FOR TOO LONG BY THE
PREVIOUS LIBERAL ADMINISTRATION,
WE HAVE LISTENED, WE'RE BEING
BOLD, AND WE'RE TAKING ACTION.
AND I'D ALSO LIKE TO ADD,
MR. SPEAKER, WE'RE GOING TO BE
REDUCING BURDEN ON BUSINESSES
AND WE'RE GOING TO BE BUILDING A
STRONGER BUSINESS ENVIRONMENT BY
LAYING THE FOUNDATION FOR THE
REAL ESTATE PROFESSIONALS TO
INCORPORATE.
THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

The Speaker says SUPPLEMENTARY QUESTION.

Martow says THANK YOU VERY MUCH,
MR. SPEAKER.
AND I WANT TO THANK THE MINISTER
FOR HER ANSWER.
I WAS THE CAUCUS TEAM ADVISORY
CHAIR THAT HEARD THIS BILL AND
THE DISCUSSION AND I WANT TO
THANK THE MINISTER FOR ALL OF
HER HARD WORK AND DEDICATION AND
BY I WANT INTRODUCING A BILL
THAT WAS DEVELOPED...

[SOME APPLAUSE]

Martow continues AND I WANT TO THANK THE MINISTER
FOR ALL THE CONSULTATION DONE ON
THIS BILL.
IN FACT, I WAS ABLE TO SEE
FIRSTHAND THE EXPENSE WITH THE
MINISTER AND THIS GOVERNMENT IS
DEDICATED TO LISTENING TO THE
PEOPLE OF ONTARIO.
THIS IS A COMMITMENT THAT OUR
GOVERNMENT AND OUR PREMIER TAKE
VERY SERIOUSLY, ESPECIALLY WHEN
IT COMES TO LEGISLATION THAT
IMPACTS ONE OF THE MOST
IMPORTANT DECISIONS ONTARIANS
MAKE IN THEIR LIFE, PURCHASING A
HOME.
I KNOW THAT MANY ONTARIANS WILL
BE GLAD TO HEAR OF THE PROPOSED
ACTIONS THE MINISTER IS TAKING
TO MODERNIZE LAWS GOVERNING REAL
ESTATE BROKERAGES, PROFESSIONALS
IN THIS PROVINCE.
SPEAKER, CAN THE MINISTER TELL
THIS HOUSE HOW THE TRUST IN REAL
ESTATE SERVICES ACT WILL ENHANCE
CONSUMER PROTECTION?
THANK YOU.

The Speaker says REPLY.

Thompson says THANK YOU, SPEAKER, TO THE MEMBER FOR THORNHILL, I SAY
THANK YOU FOR YOUR KIND REMARKS.
BUT WE HAVE TO SHARE ALL OF THE
CREDIT WITH THE CAUCUS AND THE MEMBERS OPPOSITE BECAUSE IN THIS
HOUSE FOR YEARS, WE'VE BEEN
HEARING THE NEED TO REVIEW THE
LEGISLATION THAT HAD BEEN
OUTDATED AND SO I'M REALLY
PLEASED TO SHARE WITH EVERYONE
TODAY OUR PROPOSED CHANGES WOULD
NOT ONLY ENHANCE CONSUMER
PROTECTION BUT IT'S GOING TO
INCREASE CONSUMER CONFIDENCE IN
THE REAL ESTATE SECTOR.
THROUGH BETTER INFORMATION AND
DISCLOSURES WHICH LEAD TO CHOICE
IN PURCHASE AND A BETTER SALES
PROCESS.
THESE CHANGES WILL ALLOW
CONSUMERS IN ONTARIO TO HAVE
CONFIDENCE THAT THE REAL ESTATE
INDUSTRY AND ITS PROFESSIONALS
ARE OPERATING WITH
ACCOUNTABILITY.
IF THE BILL IS PASSED, ONTARIO'S
GOVERNMENT REMAINS COMMITTED TO
CONTINUING TO CONSULT WITH
CONSUMERS AND STAKEHOLDERS TO
DEVELOP PROPOSED REGULATIONS.
THIS IS GOOD LEGISLATION,
SPEAKER.
THESE CHANGES WILL HELP
CONSUMERS MAKE MORE INFORMED
DECISIONS AND ALSO REDUCE BURDEN
ON OUR REAL ESTATE
PROFESSIONALS.
THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

[SOME APPLAUSE]

The Speaker says THANK YOU.
THE NEXT question. The member for Hamilton West-Ancaster-Dundas.

The caption changes to "Sandy Shaw. NDP. Hamilton West-Ancaster-Dundas."

Shaw is in her late forties, with chin-length straight brown hair. She wears glasses, a lavender blazer and a black blouse.

She says THANK YOU, MR. SPEAKER.
MY QUESTION IS TO THE MINISTER OF FINANCE.
ONTARIANS ARE CONCERNED ABOUT
OTHER CONTRACTS THE PREMIER
PROMISED TO RIP UP.
WE KNOW THE PROVINCE IS PAYING
CLEAN ENERGY PROVIDERS
231 MILLION DOLLARS NOT TO BUILD GREEN
POWER.
THE GOVERNMENT'S POLITICAL
INTERVENTIONS WITH HYDRO ONE
HAVE ALREADY LED TO A CANCELLED
CONTRACT IN A 103 MILLION DOLLARS PENALTY.
AND THE GOVERNMENT HAS LOST
COURT BATTLE AFTER COURT BATTLE,
PROBABLY MORE TO COME.
EARLIER THIS WHEELCHAIR, YEAR, R
PASSED LEGISLATION TO TEAR UP
THE PROVINCE'S TEN-YEAR CONTRACT
WITH THE BEER STORES.
INDUSTRY SOURCES ESTIMATE THAT
THIS WRECKLESS MOVE COULD COST
ONTARIANS UP TO 1 BILLION DOLLARS.
CAN THE MINISTER PLEASE GIVE US
AN UPDATE ON THE PLAN TO RIP UP
THE CONTRACT WITH THE BEER STORE
AND HOW MUCH WILL THAT COST
TAXPAYERS?

The Speaker says MINISTER OF
FINANCE.

The caption changes to "Rod Phillips. PC. Minister of Finance."

Phillips is in his early fifties, clean-shaven, with short gray hair. He wears a gray suit, white shirt and blue tie.

He says I THANK THE MEMBER FOR HER
INTEREST AND HER QUESTION.
MR. SPEAKER, WE ARE MODERNIZING
ALCOHOL AND THE LEGISLATION
AROUND ALCOHOL AS THE MEMBER
WILL KNOW IN THE BILL, THERE ARE
SEVERAL VERY PROGRESSIVE
AMENDMENTS CONTAINED, AMENDMENTS
THAT ALL TAKE STAKEHOLDERS, MEMS
OF THE BEER INDUSTRY INDICATED
THEY SUPPORT DECOUPLING THE
ISSUES OF THE REGULATOR VERSUS
THE LCBO SO THERE IS A GREAT
DEAL OF PROGRESS IN THAT REGARD.
WE'VE ALSO MADE IT CLEAR WE WANT
TO INCREASE CONVENIENCE FOR
ONTARIANS AND WE ARE IN
DISCUSSIONS WITH ALL
STAKEHOLDERS INCLUDING THE
BREWERS IN THAT REGARD AND,
MR. SPEAKER, WHEN WE HAVE NEWS
TO REPORT ON THOSE DISCUSSIONS,
I'LL BE HAPPY TO BRING THEM TO
THIS LEGISLATURE.

The Speaker says SUPPLEMENTARY QUESTION.

Shaw says THANK YOU FOR THAT ANSWER,
MINISTER, BUT I WOULD SAY THAT
THE PEOPLE OF ONTARIO ARE MORE
INTERESTED IN WHAT THIS IS GOING
TO COST THEM, NOT HOW OFTEN THEY
CAN GET A BUCK-A-BEER IN
ONTARIO.
SO THIS GOVERNMENT IS NOW
NOTORIOUS FOR RIPPING UP
CONTRACTS WITHOUT CONSIDERATION
FOR THE COSTS.
SO TO QUOTE ONE OBSERVER,
GOVERNMENTS CAN ALSO MAKE
BONE-HEADED, IDEOLOGICAL
DECISIONS THAT CLOSE BUSINESSES,
KILL JOBS, AND DRIVE AWAY
INVESTMENTS, WHICH IS EXACTLY
WHAT THE FORD GOVERNMENT IS
DOING.
IT'S BEEN MONTHS, MONTHS SINCE
THE GOVERNMENT PASSED
LEGISLATION GIVING THEMSELVES
THE POWER TO RIP UP THE BEER
STORE CONTRACT, CANCELLATION
THAT WE KNOW COULD COST
MILLIONS, HUNDRED OF MILLIONS OF
DOLLARS FOR TAXPAYERS.
WILL THE MINISTER PLEASE TELL
FAMILIES HOW MUCH PUBLIC MONEY
WILL BE SPENT ON RIPPING UP
THESE CONTRACTS AND WHY IS THIS
MONEY BEING DIVERTED FROM OUR
SCHOOLS AND UNDERFUNDED
HOSPITALS?

The Speaker says MINISTER.

Phillips says MR. SPEAKER, AND I APPRECIATE
THE MEMBER'S INTEREST IN THIS
PRIORITY.
WE HAVE MANY PRIORITIES,
MR. SPEAKER, AND AS I LAID OUT
IN OUR FALL ECONOMIC STATEMENT
TWO WEEKS AGO, CRITICAL AMONG
THOSE ARE MAKING SURE WE PUT
MONEY BACK INTO THE POCKET OF
ONTARIANS.
3 BILLION DOLLARS IN 2020, MR. SPEAKER,
MAKING SURE THAT WE INVEST...

[SOME APPLAUSE]

Phillips says IN CRITICAL PUBLIC SERVICES
THAT'S WHY RECORD SPENDING IN
THE MINISTRY OF HEALTH,
1.9 BILLION DOLLARS MORE THAN LAST YEAR,
1.2 BILLION DOLLARS MORE IN EDUCATION.

[SOME APPLAUSE]

Phillips says MR. SPEAKER, ENSURING THAT WE
ONTARIO BACK ON A SOUND
FINANCIAL FOOTING.
MR. SPEAKER, THAT'S WHY WE'LL
BALANCE THE BUDGET IN 2023.
ALL OF THIS UNDERPINS OUR
COMMITMENT TO THE ECONOMY,
254,000 NET NEW JOBS, THOSE ARE
THINGS THAT ARE PRIORITIES AND
ON OTHER ISSUES, WE'LL REPORT
BACK ON THOSE PRIORITIES WHEN WE
HAVE NEW INFORMATION.

[SOME APPLAUSE]

The Speaker says NEXT question. The member for Guelph.

The caption changes to "Mike Schreiner. Green. Guelph."

Schreiner is in his late forties, clean-shaven, with short brown hair. He wears glasses, a gray suit, white shirt, and patterned green tie.

He says THANK YOU, MR. SPEAKER.
MY QUESTION'S FOR THE ACTING
PREMIER.
ONTARIO IS IN THE MIDST OF A
HOUSING AFFORDABILITY CRISIS.
A MINIMUM WAGE WORKER IN TORONTO
MUST WORK 79 HOURS PER WEEK JUST
TO AFFORD A BASIC ONE-BEDROOM
APARTMENT.
IN HAMILTON, OTTAWA, KITCHENER,
MY RIDING OF GUELPH, AND MOST
OTHER CITIES ACROSS THE
PROVINCE, ZERO PERCENT OF RENTAL
HOUSING IS AFFORDABLE TO SOMEONE
WORKING FULL-TIME ON MINIMUM
WAGE.
THE LAST OF AFFORDABLE RENTAL
HOUSING IS HURTING STUDENTS
VISITING QUEEN'S PARK TODAY,
SENIORS AND YOUNG FAMILIES, YET
THERE'S NOTHING IN THE FALL
ECONOMIC STATEMENT ABOUT
AFFORDABLE RENTAL HOUSING.
AS A MATTER OF FACT, THE
MINISTRY'S BUDGET IS BEING CUT.
SO THROUGH YOU, MR. SPEAKER, TO
THE ACTING PREMIER, WILL THE
GOVERNMENT COMMIT TODAY TO MAKE
INVESTMENTS IN AFFORDABLE
PURPOSE-BUILT RENTAL HOUSING IN
PART OF THE FALL ECONOMIC
STATEMENT SO WE CAN ADDRESS THE
HOUSING AFFORDABILITY CRISIS IN
ONTARIO?

The Speaker says DEPUTY
PREMIER.

The Deputy Premier says MINISTER OF LABOUR.

The Speaker says REFERRED TO THE MINISTER OF LABOUR, TRAINING
AND SKILLS DEVELOPMENT.

The caption changes to "Honourable Monte McNaughton. PC. Minister of Labour, Training and Skills Development."

McNaughton is in his late thirties, clean-shaven, with receding short brown hair. He wears glasses, a gray suit, white shirt, and striped gray tie.

He says THANK YOU VERY MUCH,
MR. SPEAKER.

[SOME APPLAUSE]

McNaughton says WE BELIEVE AS A GOVERNMENT THAT
EVERYONE IN ONTARIO DESERVES A
PLACE TO CALL HOME.
THAT'S WHY OUR GOVERNMENT HAS
MADE HOUSING A TOP PRIORITY
SINCE WE CAME TO GOVERNMENT,
MR. SPEAKER.
16 MONTHS AGO.
I KNOW THE MINISTER OF MUNICIPAL
AFFAIRS AND HOUSING HAS WORKED
HARD, HAS HAD MANY, MANY
CONVERSATIONS ACROSS THIS
PROVINCE WITH PEOPLE AND THAT'S
WHY WE INTRODUCED OUR HOUSING
SUPPLY ACTION PLAN.
MR. SPEAKER, OUR PLAN IS
RESPONSIBLE, SUSTAINABLE, IT'S
GOING TO HELP REDUCE RED TAPE TO
INCREASE THE SUPPLY OF HOUSING.
BUT MR. SPEAKER, IN 16 MONTHS,
WE'VE ALSO WORKED REALLY, REALLY
HARD TO CREATE MORE THAN A
QUARTER OF A MILLION NEW JOBS IN
THE PROVINCE OF ONTARIO,
MR. SPEAKER.
WAGES ARE GOING UP IN THE
PROVINCE, AND AS I SAID EARLIER
THIS WEEK, MR. SPEAKER, ONE OF THE GREATEST INITIATIVES THAT
THE PREMIER'S BROUGHT FORWARD IN
ONTARIO, THOSE MAKING 30,000 OR
UNDER THIS YEAR WILL PAY ZERO
PROVINCIAL INCOME TAX.

[SOME APPLAUSE]

The Speaker says SUPPLEMENTARY QUESTION.

Schreiner says WITH ALL DUE RESPECT TO THE
MINISTER, MR. SPEAKER, MOST OF
THOSE LOW-WAGE WORKERS CAN'T
EVEN AFFORD TO RENT A BASIC
ONE-BEDROOM APARTMENT.
AS A MATTER OF FACT, OVER THE
LAST 30 YEARS IN ONTARIO, ONLY
9 percent OF OUR HOUSING STOCK IS
PURPOSE-BUILT RENTAL HOUSING.
THE LACK OF AFFORDABLE OPTIONS
IS DRIVING PEOPLE OUT OF OUR
COMMUNITIES, IT'S INCREASING
LEVELS OF POVERTY.
WE'RE SEEING MORE AND MORE
PEOPLE SLEEPING IN UNHOUSED
SITUATION INSIDE RIDINGS LIKE
MINE IN GUELPH AND OTHERS ACROSS
THE PROVINCE.
AND YET NOTHING IN THE FALL
ECONOMIC STATEMENT TALKS ABOUT
BUILDING MORE PURPOSE-BUILT,
AFFORDABLE RENTAL HOUSING IN
ONTARIO OF THE AS A MATTER OF
FACT, THE MINISTRY'S BUDGET HAS
BEEN REDUCED IN THE FALL
ECONOMIC STATEMENT.
SO I GO BACK TO THE MINISTER:
WILL THE GOVERNMENT COMMIT TODAY
TO MAKING INVESTMENTS IN
PURPOSE-BUILT, AFFORDABLE RENTAL
HOUSING SO PEOPLE WITH MODEST
AND MIDDLE INCOMES CAN AFFORD A
RENTAL UNIT IN THIS PROVINCE?

The Speaker says MINISTER,
REPLY.

McNaughton says MR. SPEAKER, AGAIN, THIS
OBVIOUSLY HAS BEEN A TOP
PRIORITY OF OUR GOVERNMENT.
THAT'S WHY THE MINISTER OF
MUNICIPAL AFFAIRS AND HOUSING
BROUGHT FORWARD THE HOUSING
SUPPLY ACTION PLAN.
BUT MR. SPEAKER, WE ARE
INVESTING IN A COMMUNITY HOUSING
SYSTEM THAT WAS NEGLECTED FOR
YEARS BY THE PREVIOUS LIBERAL
GOVERNMENT.
MR. SPEAKER, THEY HAD 15 YEARS
TO MAKE THIS A PRIORITY.
MR. SPEAKER, IN FACT, IN
2019-2020 ALONE, OUR GOVERNMENT
IS PROVIDING MORE THAN
1 BILLION DOLLARS TO SUSTAIN, REPAIR
AND GROW COMMUNITY HOUSING RIGHT
ACROSS THIS PROVINCE.
BUT MR. SPEAKER, IT IS IMPORTANT
SO WE CAN MAKE THESE INVESTMENTS
THAT WE CONTINUE TO GROW
ONTARIO'S ECONOMY.
MR. SPEAKER, UNDER THE PREVIOUS
GOVERNMENT SUPPORTED BY THE
OFFICIAL OPPOSITION, WE LOST
300,000 WELL-PAYING
MANUFACTURING JOBS IN THE
PROVINCE.
MR. SPEAKER, BECAUSE OF THE
FORMER GOVERNMENT AND THE
OFFICIAL OPPOSITION...

The Speaker says ORDER.

McNaughton says HYDRO RATES TRIPLED IN
THE PROVINCE OF ONTARIO,
MR. SPEAKER.

The Speaker says RESPONSE.

McNaughton says IN 16 MONTHS, WE ARE TURNING
THIS PROVINCE AROUND.
WE'VE CREATED OVER 250,000
WELL-PAYING JOBS IN THIS
PROVINCE.
UNEMPLOYMENT IS AT A
THREE-DECADE LOW.

The Speaker says THANK YOU.
THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

[SOME APPLAUSE]

The Speaker says MEMBER FOR MARKHAM-THORNHILL.

[SOME APPLAUSE]

The caption changes to "Logan Kanapathi. PC. Markham-Thornhill."

Kanapathi is in his forties, clean-shaven and balding. He wears a blue suit, white shirt, and printed blue tie.

He says MY QUESTION IS FOR THE
MINISTER OF SENIORS AND
ACCESSIBILITY.
SPEAKER, THIS MORNING, THE
MINISTER ALONGSIDE THE PREMIER
AND THE MINISTRY OF HEALTH
ANNOUNCED LOW ELIGIBLE INCOME
SENIORS WILL ACCESS THE... AND
NOW ACCESS HIGH QUALITY ROUTINE
FREE DENTAL CARE.
SPEAKER, MANY LOW-INCOME SENIORS
FACE CHALLENGES ACCESSING
REGULAR DENTAL CARE DUE TO THE
FINANCIAL IMPLICATION AND OTHER
OBSTRUCTIONS.
THAT'S WHY OUR GOVERNMENT HAS
BROUGHT FORWARD THIS PROGRAM.
OUR SENIORS DESERVE A PROGRAM
THAT WILL HELP RELIEVE THE
BURDEN AND STRESS LEVELS.
CAN THE MINISTER TELL THIS HOUSE
HOW ELIGIBLE SENIORS CAN APPLY
TO THIS PROGRAM?

[SOME APPLAUSE]

The Speaker says QUESTION FOR
THE MINISTER OF SENIORS AND
ACCESSIBILITY.

The caption changes to "Honourable Raymond Cho. PC. Minister for Seniors and Accessibility."

Cho is in his late fifties, clean-shaven, with short side-parted black hair. He wears glasses, a gray suit, white shirt, and checkered gray tie.

He says THANK YOU, MR. SPEAKER.
THANK YOU TO THE MEMBER FOR SCARBOROUGH... NOT SCARBOROUGH,
FOR RAISING SUCH AN IMPORTANT
QUESTION.
I ALSO LIKE TO THANK THE MEMBER
FOR BEING A PASSIONATE ADVOCATE
FOR SENIORS' WELL-BEING NOT ONLY
IN YOUR RIDING, ALL ACROSS
ONTARIO.
MR. SPEAKER, I'M VERY PROUD TO
SAY THAT THE ONTARIO SENIORS
DENTAL CARE PROGRAM IS ANNOUNCED
OFFICIALLY AVAILABLE ONLINE.

[SOME APPLAUSE]

Cho says THE PORTAL CAN BE ACCESSED AT
ONTARIO.CA/SENIORSDENTAL.
SENIORS CAN ALSO PICK UP
HARD-COPY APPLICATION FORMS.
AT LOCAL PUBLIC HEALTH UNITS.
MR. SPEAKER, WELL-BEING OF ALL
ONTARIO SENIORS IS A TOP
PRIORITY FOR OUR GOVERNMENT.

The Speaker says THANK YOU VERY
MUCH.
THE SUPPLEMENTARY QUESTION.
MARKHAM-THORNHILL FOR
SUPPLEMENTARY QUESTION.

Kanapathi says THANK YOU, MR. SPEAKER.
THANK YOU, MINISTER, FOR THAT
GREAT ANSWER, AND THANK YOU FOR
YOUR HARD WORK FOR THE SENIORS.
I KNOW THAT YOU CAME TO THE
MARKHAM-THORNHILL RIDING FOR
THE SENIORS TOWN HALL.
SPEAKER, THE SENIORS DENTAL
PROGRAM IS ANOTHER GREAT STEP
OUR GOVERNMENT IS TAKING TO
ADDRESS HEALTH CARE.
WORKING HARD TO COMPLEMENT OUR
COMPREHENSIVE PLAN TO END
HALLWAY HEALTH CARE.
THIS WILL OF COURSE INVOLVE
BUILDING NEW BEDS BUT IT WILL
ALSO INVOLVE CHANGEING HOW
SERVICE IS DELIVERED TO MAKE
SYSTEM MORE EFFICIENT.
WE ARE INVESTING IN HEALTH CARE
PROMOTION, ENABLING NEW MODEL OF
CARE FOR 911 PATIENTS AND MENTAL
HEALTH AND ADDICTION SERVICES.
NOW WE ARE FULFILL OUR PROMISES
TO SENIORS AND ANNOUNCE OUR NEW
DENTAL CARE PROGRAM FOR
LOW-INCOME SENIORS.
CAN THE MINISTER TELL THE HOUSE
HOW OUR SENIORS' DENTAL PROGRAM
FITS IN OUR GOVERNMENT PLAN TO
END THE HALLWAY HEALTH CARE
SYSTEM?
THANK YOU.

The Speaker says MINISTER.

Cho says THANK YOU.
I LIKE TO REPORT THAT THE
QUESTION THE MINISTRY OF HEALTH.

The Speaker says THANK YOU...
MINISTRY OF HEALTH.

The caption changes to "Honourable Christine Elliott. PC. Minister of Health."

Elliott is in her late fifties, with long blond hair. She wears a printed black dress.

She says SPEAKER, I AM VERY PROUD OUR
GOVERNMENT OFFICIALLY LAUNCHED
THE ONTARIO SENIORS DENTAL CARE
PROGRAM.
IT WILL PROVIDE HIGH QUALITY
DENTAL CARE FOR ELIGIBLE
LOW-INCOME SENIORS.
PREVENTIBLE DENTAL ISSUES LEAD
TO MORE THAN 60,000 EMERGENCY
ROOM VISITS EVERY YEAR.
PREVENTIBLE DENTAL ISSUES CAN BE
SOLVED BY THE DENTAL CARE THAT
WE WOULD BE PROVIDING.
A SIGNIFICANT NUMBER OF THESE
VISITS ARE BY SENIORS WHO DO NOT
HAVE DENTAL COVERAGE AND HAVE
DIFFICULTY ACCESSING CARE.
THE ONTARIO SENIORS DENTAL CARE
PROGRAM WILL HELP ELIGIBLE
SENIORS RECEIVE THE HIGH QUALITY
DENTAL CARE THAT THEY DESERVE.
BY KEEPING SENIORS HEALTHY, WE
CAN HELP THEM AVOID EMERGENCY
VISIT TO THE HOSPITAL AND HELP
AVOID CHRONIC DISEASES.
THIS NEW PROGRAM WILL HELP OUR
GOVERNMENT CONTINUE ON OUR PATH
OF ENDING HALLWAY HEALTH CARE
AND INCREASING THE QUALITY OF
LIFE FOR ALL SENIORS ACROSS OUR
PROVINCE.

[SOME APPLAUSE]

The Speaker says THANK YOU.
THE NEXT question. The member for Hamilton Mountain.

The caption changes to "Monique Taylor. NDP. Hamilton Mountain."

Taylor is in her forties, with blond hair in a short bob. She wears black-rimmed glasses, a black blazer, white blouse, and a pearl necklace.

She says THANK YOU, SPEAKER.
TODAY IS UNIVERSAL CHILDREN'S
DAY, A DAY TO REFLECT ON HOW
WE'RE SERVING THE CHILDREN OF
THIS PROVINCE.
AND QUITE FRANKLY, SPEAKER, THIS
GOVERNMENT CONTINUES TO FAIL OUR
MOST VULNERABLE CHILDREN.
LAST NIGHT, THE STAR HAD YET
ANOTHER STORY OF FAMILIES
WAITING IN THE DARK FOR THEIR
FUNDING.
NO ONE WILL GIVE THEM THE
INFORMATION THAT THEY NEED.
FAMILIES ARE BEYOND
DISAPPOINTED.
LIFE IS GETTING HARDER AND
HARDER FOR THEM AND THE STRESS
CONTINUES TO GROW.
THEY NEED ACTION NOW.
WHEN WILL ALL OF THESE FAMILIES
LANGUISHING ON WAIT LISTS
FINALLY GET THE FUNDING THAT
THEIR CHILDREN NEED?

[SOME APPLAUSE]

The Speaker says DEPUTY
PREMIER.

The Deputy Premier says MINISTER OF CHILDREN
COMMUNITY AND SOCIAL SERVICES.

The Speaker says THE MINISTER
FOR CHILDREN COMMUNITY AND
SOCIAL SERVICES.

The caption changes to "Honourable Todd Smith. PC. Minister of Children, Community and Social Services."

Smith is in his late forties, balding, with a gray goatee. He wears a blue suit, white shirt, and printed blue tie.

He says THANKS VERY MUCH, AND THANKS
TO THE MEMBER OPPOSITE FOR THE
QUESTION.
I UNDERSTAND THE URGENCY FROM
THE MEMBER OPPOSITE, AND WE GET
THAT, TOO.
WE WERE GIVEN THE ONTARIO AUTISM
EXPERT PANEL'S RECOMMENDATIONS
THREE WEEKS AGO TODAY, AS A
MATTER OF FACT, MR. SPEAKER.
AND AS THE MEMBER KNOWS, IT WAS
A RATHER HEFTY PIECE OF
RECOMMENDATION, 63 PAGES IN ALL,
MR. SPEAKER.
MY OFFICIALS ARE LOOKING AT THAT
AND WE ARE LOOKING AT HOW WE CAN
START TO ROLL FUNDING OUT THE
DOOR TO THESE FAMILIES.
I CAN TELL YOU THAT WE ARE
CONTINUING TO ROLL OUT CHILDHOOD
BUDGETS WHILE WE ARE AWAITING
FURTHER NEWS ON THE ONTARIO
AUTISM PANEL TO BE RELEASED,
MR. SPEAKER, IN THE COMING DAYS,
WEEKS AND MONTHS.
BUT WE UNDERSTAND THE URGENCY.
WE UNDERSTAND THAT THIS FAMILIES
ARE HAVING DIFFICULT TIMES.
WE KNOW THAT THIS IS AN
IMPERFECT SITUATION, AND I'VE
MENTIONED THAT WHEN I'VE SPOKEN
ABOUT THIS IN THE PAST.

The Speaker says RESPONSE.

Smith says HOWEVER, WE ARE PROMISING WE
ARE GOING TO BRING A NEEDS-BASED
PROGRAM FOR AUTISM FAMILIES TO
ENSURE THAT THEY'RE GETTING THE
HELP THAT THEY NEED,
MR. SPEAKER.

[SOME APPLAUSE]

The Speaker says SUPPLEMENTARY QUESTION.

Taylor says SPEAKER, THIS MINISTER
PROMISED THAT THE PROGRAM WOULD
BE OUT BY APRIL.
THIS IS THE SECOND PROGRAM THAT
THIS GOVERNMENT HAS PUT FORWARD.
IF THEY CAN'T GET THE FIRST
PROGRAM AND MONEY IN PARENTS'
POCKET IN NINE MONTHS, HOW ARE
THEY POSSIBLY GOING TO DO THE
NEXT PROGRAM IN LESS THAN FOUR
MONTHS?
IT DOESN'T MAKE SENSE.
TODAY WITH US IS STACY.
TODAY IS DAY 846 THAT HER CHILD
HAS BEEN ON THE WAIT LIST.
SHE HAS MET WITH HER
CONSERVATIVE MPP.
SHE HAS MET WITH THE MINISTER
AND HIS PARLIAMENTARIAN
ASSISTANTS.
THIS GOVERNMENT KNOWS THE
CHALLENGES THAT STACY'S FAMILY
AND THOUSANDS OF FAMILIES LIKE
HER ARE FACING.
BUT NOTHING HAS CHANGED.
FAMILIES NEED MONEY IN THEIR
POCKETS TO BE ABLE TO PURCHASE
SERVICES.
FAMILIES ACROSS THIS PROVINCE
ARE IN CRISIS.
WHEN CAN STACY AND THE FAMILIES
LIKE HERS EXPECT THE SUPPORT
THAT THEIR CHILDREN NEED?

The Speaker says MINISTER.

Smith says WELL, THANK YOU.
AND I THANK THE MEMBER OPPOSITE
FOR THE QUESTION.
I KNOW THERE ARE MANY FAMILIES
OUT THERE WHO ARE IN SIMILAR
SITUATION AND THE MEMBER
OPPOSITE TALKED ABOUT 845 DAYS,
WHICH MEANS THAT THAT FAMILY HAS
BEEN WAITING BACK INTO THE
LIBERAL GOVERNMENT'S PREVIOUS
PROGRAM, AND THEY WERE NOT
GETTING THE SERVICES THEY NEED.

The Speaker says ORDER.

Smith says BUT THAT'S WHY...

The Speaker says ORDER!

Smith says MR. SPEAKER, I THINK THE
OPPOSITE MEMBERS NEED TO
UNDERSTAND THAT.
THAT'S WHY WE HAVE TAKEN THE
TIME TO MEET WITH THE EXPERT
PANEL OVER THE SUMMER.
THEY HAVE BROUGHT FORWARD
RECOMMENDATIONS.
THIS IS A NEW ONTARIO AUTISM
PROGRAM DESIGNED BY THE AUTISM
COMMUNITY, MR. SPEAKER.

[SOME APPLAUSE]

Smith says ONE THAT WE ARE GOING TO ROLL
OUT.
BECAUSE FAMILIES SHOULDN'T BE
WAITING FOR 850 DAYS TO RECEIVE
SERVICES, MR. SPEAKER.
THAT'S WHY WE'RE TAKING THE TIME
TO ENSURE WE GET THIS RIGHT, SO
THAT WE DON'T HAVE TO HAVE THESE
FAMILIES COMING TO QUEEN'S PARK
EVERY DAY WAITING TO GET
SERVICES.
THEY WILL HAVE AN ONTARIO AUTISM
PROGRAM THAT IS THE BEST IN THE
COUNTRY, MR. SPEAKER.
AND WITH THE HELP OF THOSE
FAMILIES AND WITH THE HELP OF
THAT EXPERT PANEL, WE'RE GOING
TO GET THERE.

The Speaker says THANK YOU.

[SOME APPLAUSE]

The Speaker says NEXT question. The member for Mississauga Centre.

The caption changes to "Natalia Kusendova. PC. Mississauga Centre."

Kusendova is in her thirties, with long wavy brown hair. She wears glasses, a blue dress and a rosary.

She speaks French and a translator says
THANK YOU, MR. SPEAKER.
MY QUESTION IS TO THE MINISTER OF FRANCOPHONE AFFAIRS.
IN MY RIDING OF MISSISSAUGA
CENTRE, AS IT IS THE CASE
THROUGHOUT THE PROVINCE, I MEET
NEW CANADIANS THAT MUCH LIKE MY
FAMILY CHOSE CANADA AS THEIR NEW
COUNTRY TO SETTLE IN.
THEY DECIDED TO COME HERE IN
ONTARIO BECAUSE WE'RE RICH AND
WE'RE VERY WEALTHY AND HAVE A
LOT TO OFFER.
THESE PEOPLE COME FROM DIFFERENT
COUNTRIES THAT ARE PART OF THE
FRANCOPHONIE.
THESE TWO LANGUAGES AND ALL THE
HERITAGE THEY OFFER IS AN IDEAL
PLACE FOR THEM TO SETTLE.
CAN THE MINISTER PROVIDE US WITH
MORE INFORMATION ON WHAT WE ARE
DOING TO HELP THE FRANCOPHONE
COMMUNITY?

The Speaker talks and a translator says
MINISTER OF FRANCOPHONE AFFAIRS.

The caption changes to "Honourable Caroline Mulroney. Minister of Francophone Affairs."

Mulroney is in her mid-forties, with long wavy brown hair. She wears a pink blazer over a spotted gray dress.

She speaks French and a translator says
THANK YOU TO THE MEMBER OF
MISSISSAUGA CENTRE FOR HER
QUESTION.
WE'RE WORKING WITH THE
FRANCOPHONE COMMUNITY IN ORDER
TO PROMOTE THE INTERESTS AND TO
DEFEND THE RIGHTS AND EVERYTHING
THAT THEY HAVE GAINED.
EARLIER, I HAD THE OPPORTUNITY
TO MEET PEOPLE WITH THE
FRANCOPHONE ASSEMBLY OF ONTARIO,
THE AFO, THAT SPOKE TO ME ABOUT
ALL OF THE POSITIVE INITIATIVES
THAT WE HAVE PUT IN PLACE AND
EVERYTHING THAT WE'VE DONE FOR
THE FRANCOPHONIE UNIVERSITY THAT
WILL BE AN IMPORTANT LEVER FOR
PROSPERITY AND ECONOMIC GROWTH.
IN TERMS OF MODERNIZING THE
FRENCH LANGUAGE SERVICES ACT,
OUR GOVERNMENT UNDERSTANDS THAT
ACCESS TO FRENCH LANGUAGE OF OF
SERVICES IS A FUNDAMENTAL ISSUE
FOR THE FRANCOPHONE COMMUNITY.
THAT'S WHY I PUT TOGETHER A
PANEL IN ORDER TO CONSULT WITH,
IN ORDER TO MODERNIZE THAT ACT.

Kusendova speaks French and a translator says
I'D LIKE TO THANK THE MINISTER FOR
HER ANSWER.
AND ALL OF HER EFFORTS TO
IMPROVE THE RIGHT OF THE
FRANCOPHONE COMMUNITY.
MUCH LIKE HER, I MET WITH THE LEADERS OF THE AFO AND WENT TO
THEIR ANNUAL CONVENTION IN
SUDBURY LAST MONTH.
MODERNIZING THE FRENCH LANGUAGE
SERVICES ACT IS AN IMPORTANT
ISSUE AND OUR GOVERNMENT WILL
TAKE ALL THE TIME THAT IS
NEGLIGENCE IN ORDER TO REVIEW
THE ACT, AND WE WON'T TAKE ANY
LESSONS FROM THE OPPOSITION THAT
HAS NOT HAD ANY EXPERIENCE IN
GOVERNMENT AND DOESN'T
UNDERSTAND THE PROCESS TO
MODERNIZE THE ACT.
CAN THE MINISTER GIVE US MORE
INFORMATION IN TERMS OF
EVERYTHING THAT WE'RE DOING TO
MODERNIZE THE FRENCH LANGUAGE
SERVICES ACT?

Mulroney speaks French and a translator says
THANK YOU, MR. CHAIR.
WHAT I CAN SAY IS THAT THIS
PRIORITY, THE ONTARIO GOVERNMENT
IS VERY SERIOUS ABOUT THE
RECOMMENDATIONS AND THE DEMANDS
OF THE FRANCOPHONE COMMUNITY
WHICH IS AS FAR AS THE
MODERNIZATION OF THE FRENCH
LANGUAGE SERVICES ACT AND
ALTHOUGH FRANCOPHONES IN ONTARIO
CAN BENEFIT FROM FRENCH LANGUAGE
SERVICES, WE WANT TO MODERNIZE
THE ACT.
IT IS NOT ONLY SIMPLY REVISED,
WE WANT TO MODERNIZE THE ACT SO
THAT IT REFLECTS THE ACTUAL
CURRENT REALITY AND THE RIGHTS
OF FRANCOPHONES TODAY.
MR. CHAIR, THE LIBERALS HAVE 15
YEARS TO DO THIS IMPORTANT WORK
FOR THE FRANCOPHONE COMMUNITY
AND THEY HAVEN'T DONE THAT.
AS FAR AS WE'RE CONCERNED, WE'RE
SERIOUS, AND WE MEAN THAT WE
WANT TO DO THIS BEFORE THE END
OF THE FIRST TERM.
LIKE I SAID IN THIS HOUSE
SEVERAL TIMES, AS MINISTER OF
FRANCOPHONE AFFAIRS, I WILL WORK
CLOSELY WITH MY COLLEAGUES IN
ORDER TO PUSH FORWARD THE FINAL
FOR FRANCOPHONES.
I WANT TO MAKE SURE THAT THE
VOICE OF FRANCOPHONE COMMUNITY
IN ONTARIO IS HEARD.

[END OF TRANSLATION]

The caption changes to "Rima Berns-McGown. NDP. Beaches-East York."

Berns-McGown is in her fifties, with shoulder-length curly brown hair with white strands. She wears a black blazer and a colourful scarf.

She says THANK YOU, SPEAKER.
MY QUESTION IS FOR THE ACTING PREMIER.
IT'S UNIVERSAL CHILDREN'S DAY
AND CHILDREN'S AID WORKERS ARE
HERE TODAY WITH A DIRE WARNING
FOR THIS GOVERNMENT.
THE CUTS TO CHILD WELFARE
SERVICES IS UNDER THE LIBERALS
WERE BAD BUT THEY'VE GOTTEN
WORSE UNDER THE FORD GOVERNMENT.
ONE CAS WORKER FROM WOODSTOCK
CALLED IT DEATH BY A THOUSAND
CUTS.
YEAR-OVER-YEAR, CUTS TO THESE
AGENCIES HAVE RESULTED IN FRONT
LINE JOB LOSSES AND SERVICE CUTS
BUT IT'S THE KIDS IN CARE WHO
ULTIMATELY SUFFER.
THEY CAN'T WAIT AND HOPE THAT
MAYBE THE PREMIER WILL RAISE
MONEY FOR THEM THROUGH A CASH
FOR ACCESS DINNER.
WILL THE PREMIER REVERSE THE
CUTS TO CHILDREN'S AID THAT
BEGAN UNDER THE LIBERALS AND
CONTINUE UNDER THE
CONSERVATIVES?

[SOME APPLAUSE]

The Speaker says DEPUTY PREMIER.

The Deputy premier says ASSOCIATE MINISTER FOR CHILDREN, COMMUNITY AND SOCIAL SERVICES.

The Speaker says ASSOCIATE
MINISTER FOR CHILDREN.

The caption changes to "Honourable Jill Dunlop. PC. Associate Minister of Children and Women's Issues."

Dunlop is in her forties, with long straight blond hair. She wears a black blazer over a gray dress.

She says THANK YOU, MR. SPEAKER.
I THANK THE MEMBER FOR THE
QUESTION.
OUR VISION IS FOR AN ONTARIO
WHERE EVERY CHILD AND YOUTH WHO
IS RECEIVING SERVICES THROUGH
THE CHILD WELFARE SYSTEM HAS THE
BEST SUPPORTS POSSIBLE.
YOUTH RECEIVING SERVICE INSIDE
ONTARIO'S CHILD WELFARE SYSTEM
DESERVE THE BEST CARE AND
SUPPORT WE PROVIDE FOR THEM AND
THEIR SAFETY AND WELL-BEING IS
OUR TOP PRIORITY AND I CAN
ASSURE YOU AS THE MINISTER AND
AS A MOTHER MYSELF, CHILDREN AND
YOUTH ARE OUR TOP PRIORITY.
I WANT TO TALK ABOUT OUR
MODERNIZATION SYSTEM THAT'S
TAKING PLACE AND LOOKING AT
PREVENTION.
AND I WANT TO CONGRATULATE
TORONTO'S CHILDREN'S AID SOCIETY
ON LAUNCHING THEIR JOURNEY TO
ZERO PROGRAM.
WE KNOW THE SYSTEM IS BROKEN AND
THAT WE CAN BE DOING BETTER.
IN AUGUST I ANNOUNCED WE WOULD
BE OPENING THE MODERN I'DATION
PROGRAM WHERE WE ARE ENGAGING
YOUTH AND FAMILIES, CARE GIVERS,
INDIGENOUS PARTNERS, FRONT LINE
WORKERS, FAMILY LAW
PROFESSIONALS, AND CHILD
DEVELOPMENT SECTOR LEADERS ON
THEIR EXPERIENCES AND IDEAS HOW
WE CAN STRENGTHEN THE CHILD
WELFARE SYSTEM.
THANK YOU.

The Speaker says SUPPLEMENTARY QUESTION.

Berns-McGown says THANK YOU, SPEAKER.
MODERNIZATION SHOULD NOT BE A
EUPHEMISM FOR CUTS.

[SOME APPLAUSE]

Berns-McGown says BACK TO THE ACTING PREMIER, WHEN
THIS GOVERNMENT CUT A PLANNED
INCREASE TO SOCIAL SERVICES BY
HALF, THEY MADE LIFE MORE
PRECARIOUS FOR RECIPIENTS OF
ONTARIO WORKS AND ONTARIO
DISABILITIES SUPPORTS.
PROFITPOVERTY COSTS ALL OF US BN
27 AND 33 BILLION DOLLARS A YEAR.
THE GOVERNMENT IS APPARENTLY
STUCK IN THE DISCREDITED NOTION
OF TRICKLE-DOWN ECONOMICS BUT
WHAT TRICKLES DOWN FROM AN
ECONOMY THAT BENEFITS THE
PREMIER'S FRIENDS IS NOT
OPPORTUNITY BUT FOOD INSECURITY,
UNSTABLE HOUSING, UNCERNAK CSEC
TO BETTER EDUCATION, AND MORE
HOMELESSNESS...
UNCERTAIN ACCESS TO BETTER
EDUCATION.
LEAVING PEOPLE FURTHER BEHIND
AND WITHOUT HOPE.
WILL THE PREMIER CLEARLY STATE
THAT HE WILL REWORK THE DEEP
CUTS HE'S MADE TO OW AND ODSP?

Dunlop says MINISTER OF CHILDREN
COMMUNITY AND SOCIAL SERVICES.

The Speaker says REFER TO THE
MINISTER OF CHILDREN, COMMUNITY
AND SOCIAL SERVICES.

Smith says THANKS VERY MUCH,
MR. SPEAKER.
OUR GOVERNMENT'S FOCUSED ON A
BROADER PLAN TO ENSURE THAT WE
LIFT PEOPLE UP WHO ARE ON SOCIAL
ASSISTANCE.
JUST AN INTERESTING STAT FOR
YOU, THAT DURING THE 15 YEARS
THAT THE PREVIOUS GOVERNMENT WAS
IN POWER, WE SAW THE NUMBER OF
INDIVIDUALS RECEIVING SOCIAL
ASSISTANCE INCREASE BY 55 percent,
MR. SPEAKER.
WE CAN DO BETTER THAN THAT AND
THAT'S WHY WE'RE WORKING TO
ENSURE THAT THOSE WHO ARE ON
SOCIAL ASSISTANCE HAVE RECEIVED
AN INCREASE IN THEIR FUNDING BY
1.5 percent.
BUT WE'RE ALSO ENSURING THAT
THOSE WHO ARE ON SOCIAL
ASSISTANCE, AND I THINK THE ONE
THING THAT'S PROBABLY THE MOST
STAGGERING ABOUT THE ONTARIO
WORKS STATS IS THAT THERE ARE
ALMOST HALF A MILLION PEOPLE
ONTARIO WORKS, AND HALF OF THOSE
INDIVIDUALS ARE UNDER THE AGE OF
24.
SPEAKER, WE NEED TO BE DOING
MORE TO ENSURE THAT THOSE
INDIVIDUALS, WHEN THEY CAN, ARE
ENTERING INTO THE WORKFORCE, AND
THAT'S WHY WORKING WITH MY
COLLEAGUE THE MINISTER OF LABOUR
AND SKILLS DEVELOPMENT AND
TRAINING, THAT WE'RE...

The Speaker says RESPONSE...

Smith says PREPARING THOSE
INDIVIDUALS TO JOIN THE
WORKFORCE SO THEY CAN STAND ON
THEIR OWN, RAISE A FAMILY, OWN A
HOME.
THAT'S WHAT WE'RE DOING.

The Speaker says THANK YOU VERY
MUCH.
THE NEXT question. The member for Thornhill.

Martow says THANK YOU VERY MUCH,
MR. SPEAKER.
AND MY QUESTION IS TO THE
MINISTRY OF HEALTH.
THIS MORNING, OUR GOVERNMENT
ANNOUNCED A GREAT, NEW PROGRAM
THAT WILL MAKE AN IMMEDIATE
DIFFERENCE IN THE LIFE OF OUR
SENIORS.
MR. SPEAKER, MANY WORKING
ONTARIANS HAVE DENTAL INSURANCE
THROUGH THEIR EMPLOYER OR
THROUGH PRIVATE INSURANCE.
HOWEVER, OUR GOVERNMENT
RECOGNIZES SENIORS LIVING ON LOW
INCOMES WERE BEING LEFT BEHIND.
THAT'S WHY TODAY, WE FOLLOWED
THROUGH ON OUR PROMISE TO
SENIORS AND ANNOUNCED A GREAT,
NEW PROGRAM THAT WILL EXPAND
ACCESS TO PREVENTATIVE CARE FOR
ONTARIO SENIORS.
CAN THE MINISTRY OF HEALTH TELL
THIS HOUSE ABOUT THE KIND OF
DIFFERENCE OUR INVESTMENT IN
THIS SENIORS DENTAL PROGRAM WILL
MAKE?
THANK YOU.

The Speaker says DEPUTY PREMIER.

Elliott says THANK YOU, SPEAKER.
AND THANK YOU TO THE MEMBER FOR THORNHILL FOR HER QUESTION.
SPEAKER, OUR GOVERNMENT'S
ANNOUNCEMENT THIS MORNING IS A
MUCH-NEEDED INITIATIVE TO HELP
LOW-INCOME SENIORS.
CURRENTLY, TWO-THIRDS OF
LOW-INCOME SENIORS DO NOT HAVE
ACCESS TO DENTAL INSURANCE.
SPEAKER, THAT'S TWO-THIRDS OF
LOW-INCOME SENIORS WHO ARE
REQUIRED TO PAY OUT OF POCKET
FOR DENTAL SERVICES AND THEY
CAN'T AFFORD IT.
OUR GOVERNMENT'S INVESTMENT OF
90 MILLION DOLLARS TOWARDS THIS ANNUAL
SENIORS DENTAL PROGRAM WILL HELP
APPROXIMATELY 100,000 SENIORS
PER YEAR.
SENIORS CAN APPLY TO THE PROGRAM
TODAY, ONLINE OR AT THEIR LOCAL
PUBLIC HEALTH UNIT.
ONTARIANS AGED 65 OR OLDER WITH
AN ANNUAL INCOME OF 19,300 OR
LESS, OR COUPLES WITH A COMBINED
ANNUAL INCOME OF 32,300 OR LESS
WHO DO NOT HAVE DENTAL BENEFITS
WILL QUALIFY.
SPEAKER, THIS IS AN IMPORTANT
PIECE OF OUR PLAN TO END HALLWAY
HEALTH CARE AND TO HELP OUR
SENIORS, AND OUR GOVERNMENT WILL
CONTINUE TO SUPPORT ONTARIO'S
SENIORS BY IMPROVING ACCESS TO
THE QUALITY HEALTH CARE THAT
THEY DESERVE.

[SOME APPLAUSE]

The Speaker says SUPPLEMENTARY.

Martow says THANK YOU VERY MUCH,
MR. SPEAKER.
AND I WANT TO THANK THE MINISTER
FOR HER RESPONSE.
OUR GOVERNMENT IS BUSY KEEPING
ITS PROMISES TO THE PEOPLE OF
ONTARIO.
WE ARE CREATING JOBS, WE ARE
INVESTING ON THE FRONT LINES OF
OUR PUBLIC HEALTH CARE SYSTEM,
AND NOW WE ARE IMPLEMENTING
PUBLICLY-FUNDED DENTAL CARE FOR
LOW-INCOME SENIORS.
AND I WANT TO APPLAUD THAT.

[SOME APPLAUSE]

Martow says WE'LL NOW HAVE 100,000 SENIORS
WHO CAN ENJOY A HIGHER QUALITY
OF LIFE AND THOUSANDS FEWER
UNNECESSARY HOSPITAL VISITS.
THESE ARE THE KINDS OF RESULTS
ONTARIANS EXPECT US TO ACHIEVE.
CAN THE MINISTER TELL THE HOUSE
MORE ABOUT HOW THIS INVESTMENT
WILL FUND DENTAL CARE FOR OUR
LOW-INCOME SENIORS?
THANK YOU.

The Speaker says MINISTER.

Elliott says SPEAKER, THIS IS AN IMPORTANT
INVESTMENT IN THE FRONT LINES OF
OUR PUBLIC HEALTH CARE SYSTEM.
UNTIL OUR GOVERNMENT MADE THIS
NEW INVESTMENT, MANY LOW-INCOME
SENIORS WERE UNABLE TO ACCESS
THE DENTAL CARE THEY NEED.
WE PROMISED TO BRING CHANGE FOR
SENIORS, AND TODAY, WE ANNOUNCED
A 90 MILLION DOLLAR INVESTMENT TO MAKE
THAT HAPPEN.
OUR GOVERNMENT IS BRINGING
FORWARD A SIGNIFICANT INCREASE
IN FUNDING FOR DENTAL SERVICES
IN PUBLIC HEALTH UNITS,
COMMUNITY HEALTH CENTRES, AND
ABORIGINAL HEALTH ACCESS
CENTRES.
THIS INVESTMENT WILL ALSO FUND
NEW OPTIONS FOR CARE IN
UNDERSERVICED AREAS AND IN
MOBILE DENTAL BUSES TO ENSURE
THERE ARE NO GAPS IN COVERAGE.
OUR NEW PROGRAM WILL HELP
SENIORS IMPROVE THEIR HEALTH AND
PREVENT THEM FROM HAVING TO MAKE
PREVENTIBLE TRIPS TO THE
HOSPITAL.
OUR GOVERNMENT REMAINS COMMITTED
TO CREATING A CONNECTED SYSTEM
OF CARE WHERE EVERY PERSON IS
CONNECTED EVERY STEP ALONG THE
WAY OF THEIR HEALTH CARE
JOURNEY.

The Speaker says NEXT question. The member for Windsor West.

The caption changes to "Lisa Gretzky. NDP. Windsor West."

Gretzky is in her forties, with shoulder-length straight reddish brown hair. She wears glasses, a gray pinstripe blazer and a pink blouse.

She says THANK YOU, SPEAKER.
MY QUESTION IS TO THE ACTING
PREMIER.
TODAY, WE ARE JOINED BY MEMBERS
OF OASIS, THEY REPRESENT
AGENCIES THAT PROVIDE SUPPORTS
AND SERVICES TO 65,000
ONTARIANS, MANY WITH
DEVELOPMENTAL DISABILITIES.
FOR OVER TEN YEARS, UNDER THE
LIBERALS, THE NEED FOR SERVICES
INCREASED DRAMATICALLY.
AGENCY BUDGETS STAGNATED, AND WE
REACHED A CRISIS POINT.
AFTER A YEAR-AND-A-HALF OF DEEP
CUTS UNDER THIS CONSERVATIVE
GOVERNMENT, THINGS ARE STEADILY
GETTING WORSE.
THE CRISIS IS EVEN MORE DIRE.
RECENTLY, WE LEARNED THAT THE
FORD GOVERNMENT PLANNED TO HIRE
A MILLION DOLLAR CONSULTANT TO
HELP MAKE THESE CUTS TO
DEVELOPMENTAL SERVICES.
THAT'S ABSOLUTELY DISGRACEFUL,
SPEAKER.
OASIS PRESIDENT DARREN CONLEY
SAID, YOU CAN'T CUT MILLIONS OF
DOLLARS FROM SERVICES FOR ADULTS
WITH DEVELOPMENTAL DISABILITIES
AND THEIR FAMILIES WITHOUT
HURTING THE MOST VULNERABLE
PEOPLE IN THE PROVINCE.
I WANT TO REMIND THE MINISTER
AND THE ACTING PREMIER THEIR
GOVERNMENT NOW, IT'S THEIR
RESPONSIBILITY.
SO WILL THE ACTING PREMIER
COMMIT TODAY TO ABANDON HER PLAN
FOR CUTS TO DEVELOPMENTAL
SERVICES?
"YES" OR "NO"?

The Speaker says ANSWER FOR THE
DEPUTY PREMIER.

Elliott says REFER TO CHILDREN COMMUNITY AND SOCIAL SERVICES.

The Speaker says REFERRED.

Smith says THANK YOU VERY MUCH,
MR. SPEAKER, AND THANK YOU VERY
MUCH TO THE MEMBER OPPOSITE FOR
THE QUESTION AND AS I DID AT THE
START OF QUESTION PERIOD, I
WELCOME ALL THE MEMBERS FROM
OASIS HERE TODAY.
THEY ARE OUR PARTNERS WHEN IT
COMES TO PROVIDING SERVICES TO
THOSE WITH DEVELOPMENTAL
DISABILITIES AND THIS IS
SOMETHING THAT WE TAKE EXTREMELY
SERIOUSLY.
I HAD THE OPPORTUNITY COUPLE OF
WEEKS AGO, IT WAS ACTUALLY
HALLOWE'EN, THAT I WAS UP BY THE
AIRPORT AT A HOTEL WHERE THE
PROVINCIAL NETWORK WAS HAVING
THEIR CONFERENCE AND MET WITH
MEMBERS OF OASIS AND
MR. CONNOLLY WAS ONE OF THE MEMBERS AND WE TALKED ABOUT THE
FACT THAT WE HAD HIRED OR WERE
HIRING A SECOND SET OF EYES TO
LOOK AT THIS SECTOR,
MR. SPEAKER.
THE PREVIOUS GOVERNMENT DID
NOTHING TO TRY AND FIND
EFFICIENCIES IN THE SECTOR AND
THEY ACTUALLY MADE NO INVESTMENT
IN THIS SECTOR EITHER BUT WE'RE
TAKING HAVE VERY SERIOUSLY.
THERE WERE MEMBERS FROM
CHRISTIAN HORIZONS THERE AS
WELL, MR. SPEAKER, ALSO MEMBERS
FROM COMMUNITY LIVING ONTARIO
AND TORONTO.
WE ARE GOING TO WORK WITH THOSE
SERVICE PROVIDERS AND THE
FAMILIES AS WELL TO ENSURE THAT
WE'RE DOING EVERYTHING WE CAN TO
PROVIDE SERVICES AND MODERNIZING
THIS.

The Speaker says THANK YOU VERY
MUCH.
SUPPLEMENTARY question. The member for Ottawa Centre.

The caption changes to "Joel Harden. NDP. Ottawa Centre."

Harden is in his late thirties, clean-shaven, with short curly brown hair. He wears a gray suit and a pink shirt.

He says THANK YOU, SPEAKER.
MY QUESTION IS FOR THE ACTING
PREMIER.
THE CONSERVATIVES' PLAN TO HIRE
A MILLION DOLLAR CONSULTANT TO
TELL THEM HOW TO MAKE DEEP CUTS
TO DEVELOPMENTAL SERVICES WHILE
EXPLICITLY TELLING THIS
CONSULTANT TO IGNORE FAMILIES
AND AGENCIES IS A HUGE CONCERN
FOR THIS SECTOR.
I THANK OF JACQUELINE, A MOM
BACK IN OTTAWA CENTRE, AND HER
DAUGHTER BRONWYN, LOOKING FOR
SUPPORTIVE HOUSING AND THIS
GOVERNMENT HAS DONE NOTHING FOR
JACQUELINE AND BRONWYN.
OASIS BELIEVES REFORMS MUST BE
DRIVEN BY BETTER-OUT COMES, NOT
BUDGET DEMANDS, AND I COULDN'T
AGREE MORE.
THESE AGENCIES STILL DON'T BE
HAVE THEIR ANNUALIZED BUDGETS,
SEVEN MONTHS AFTER THE START OF THE FISCAL YEAR.
THIS GOVERNMENT'S BEEN IN
CHARGE.
THEY'RE SCARED EXAMINE THEY
WON'T FIND OUT HOW MUCH HAS BEEN
GUTTED UNTIL IT'S TOO LATE.
SPEAKER, I HAVE A VERY CLEAR
QUESTION FOR THIS GOVERNMENT IF
THEY CARE TO ACTUALLY ANSWER IT.
WILL THE ACTING PREMIER LISTEN
TO OASIS AND THEIR PLAN MEMBERS
AND CRACK DOWN ON THIS
CONSULTANT DEAL AND THEIR
PLANNED CUTS?

The Speaker says THE QUESTION'S
BEEN REFERRED TO THE MINISTER OF
CHILDREN, COMMUNITY AND SOCIAL
SERVICES.

Smith says MR. SPEAKER, NO, THE ANSWER
IS NO, WE ARE ACTUALLY WORKING
WITH THE SECTOR.
WE ARE WORKING WITH THE SECTOR.
WE'RE WORKING WITH OASIS.
WE HAVE HAD CONVERSATIONS WITH
OASIS OVER THE LAST WEEK.
WE'VE HAD CONVERSATIONS WITH
OASIS SINCE I BECAME THE
MINISTER FIVE MONTHS AGO,
MR. SPEAKER.
THAT'S THE DIFFERENCE.
WE'RE ACTUALLY TALKING TO OUR
PARTNERS IN THIS SECTOR
ANDWORKING WITH THEM,
MR. SPEAKER.
SO THE CONSULTANT, AND I KNOW
THE MEMBER OPPOSITE IS
INTERESTED, MR. SPEAKER, MAYBE
YOU CAN'T HEAR HIM, BUT THE MEMBER OPPOSITE IS INTERESTED IN
KNOWING WHETHER OR NOT WE ARE
GOING TO BE WORKING WITH
FAMILIES AND THOSE WHO ARE IN
THE SECTOR.
AND I CAN ASSURE YOU THAT WE
ARE, MR. SPEAKER.
THE CONSULTANT, AS THE MEMBER
OPPOSITE HAS ASKED, THE
CONSULTANT HAS BEEN HIRED TO
LOOK AT BEST PRACTISES.
IN OTHER JURISDICTIONS, WHERE
THEY'RE ACTUALLY BUILDING THE
HOMES THAT WE NEED IN THIS
SECTOR, WHERE THEY HAVE PROVEN
TRACK RECORDS IN THIS SECTOR,
MR. SPEAKER.

[SOME APPLAUSE]

Smith says THE GOVERNMENT, THE MINISTER, MY
STAFF ARE MEETING WITH THE
SERVICE PROVIDERS AT OASIS.
WE'VE HAD VERY HEALTHY
DISCUSSIONS WITH THEM SO FAR.
AND WE WILL HAVE HEALTHY
DISCUSSIONS WITH THEM GOING
FORWARD.

The Speaker says THE NEXT question. The member for EGLINTON-Lawrence.

The caption changes to "Robin Martin. PC. Eglinton-Lawrence."

Martin is in her fifties, with short wavy blond hair. She wears glasses, a black blazer and a green dress.

She says THANK YOU, MR. SPEAKER.
MY QUESTION IS FOR THE MINISTER
OF NATURAL RESOURCES AND
FORESTRY.
MINISTER, MOST PEOPLE HAVE A
GENERAL IDEA OF WHAT AGGREGATES
ARE BUT THEIR IMPORTANCE AND THE
CRITICAL ROLE THAT THEY PLAY IN
OUR DAILY LIVES IS OFTEN
OVERLOOKED.

The Speaker says ORDER.

[INTERJECTIONS]

Martin says AGGREGATES ARE USED TO BUILD
THE FOUNDATIONS OF OUR HOMES,
THE SCHOOLS IN WHICH OUR
CHILDREN LEARN, AND THE
OFFICES...

The Speaker says THE HOUSE WILL
COME TO ORDER.

[INTERJECTIONS]

The Speaker says MEMBER FOR EGLINTON LAWRENCE HAS THE FLOOR.

Martin says MINISTER, MOST PEOPLE HAVE A
GENERAL IDEA WHAT AGGREGATES ARE
BUT THEIR IMPORTANCE AND THE
CRITICAL ROLE THEY PLAY IN OUR
DAILY LIVES IS OFTEN OVERLOOKED.
AGGREGATES ARE USED TO BUILD THE
FOUNDATIONS OF OUR HOMES, THE
SCHOOLS IN WHICH WE LEARN, OUR
CHILDREN LEARN AND THE OFFICES
AND FACTORIES IN WHICH WE MAKE A
LIVING.
THEY'RE ALSO ESSENTIAL TO
BUILDING ROADS
RECOGNIZE THE IMPORTANCE OF BOTH
AGGREGATE RESOURCES AND PRIME
AGRICULTURAL AREAS TO THE PEOPLE
OF ONTARIO, I ASK THE MINISTER
TO EXPLAIN HOW THESE PROPOSED
CHANGES WILL STRENGTHEN
PROTECTIONS FOR THE ENVIRONMENT WHILE HELPING VITAL
INFRASTRUCTURE GET BUILT FASTER.

The Speaker says MINISTER.

The caption changes to "Honourable John Yakabuski. PC. Minister of Natural Resources and Forestry."

Yakabuski is in his early sixties, clean-shaven and balding. He wears a gray suit, blue shirt, and gray plaid tie.

He says I THANK THE MEMBER FOR HER QUESTION.
AS I SAID IN MY EARLIER ANSWER,
OUR GOVERNMENT HAS A STEADFAST
COMMITMENT TO PROTECTING THE
ENVIRONMENT AND MY MINISTRY WILL
CONTINUE TO WORK AND CONSULT
WITH INDUSTRY, MUNICIPALITIES,
AND OTHER STAKEHOLDERS ON
PROPOSED CHANGES TO THE
AGGREGATE MANAGEMENT.
IN FACT, A KEY PART OF OUR
PROPOSAL IS TO STRENGTHEN THE
PROTECTION OF WATER RESOURCES
THROUGH A MORE RIGOROUS
APPLICATION PROCESS FOR REQUESTS
FROM EXISTING SITES TO EXTRACT
AGGREGATES BELOW THE WATER
TABLE.
WE RECOGNIZE THE IMPORTANCE OF
PROTECTING PRIME AGRICULTURAL
LAND AND THE GREENBELT, IMPACTS
TO THESE AREAS
WE'RE GOING TO CONTINUE TO
LISTEN AND CONSULT WITH THEM.
THE MEMBER OPPOSITE TALKED ABOUT
THE MORATORIUM WHICH WE'VE
PROPOSED TO EXTEND FOR ANOTHER
EIGHT MONTHS AS WE CONTINUE TO
REVIEW THE DATA, CONTINUE TO
SPEAK TO MUNICIPALITIES,
CONTINUE TO SPEAK TO INDIGENOUS
COMMUNITIES, CONTINUE TO SPEAK
TO BUSINESSES TO ENSURE THAT
WE'RE MAKING THE RIGHT DECISION
BASED ON THE SCIENCE THAT'S BEEN
PUT FORWARD.
WE'RE VERIFYING THE SCIENCE
RIGHT NOW AND ONCE WE MOVE
FORWARD, THAT DATA WILL BE MADE
PUBLIC, MR. SPEAKER.

Watch: Question Period: Wednesday, November 20, 2019