Ontario Liberal Plan Will Help Seniors Stay in their Own Homes

Seniors' Property Tax Deferral Will Cover Increases

OTTAWA, Sept. 19, 2011 /CNW/ - Ontario Liberals will help seniors who want to remain in their homes by letting them defer increases in property taxes as long as they choose to stay, Ontario Liberal Party President Yasir Naqvi says.

"Helping our seniors stay in their homes is a key part of the next chapter of our Ontario Liberal Plan, Forward. Together.," Naqvi  said. "It's good for Ontario, it's good for our seniors and their families. And it's the right thing to do."

The Ontario Liberals' Seniors' Property Tax Deferral Program will let senior homeowners defer any increases in municipal property taxes until the house is sold. Both the municipal and education portions of the tax will be deferred. The province will cover the interest cost of the deferred property tax.

"Premier McGuinty recognizes the need to help seniors stay in their homes and out of hospital.  Ontarians want to remain in the community close to loved ones as long as possible. The Ontario Liberal Plan is another major step in the right direction," said Susan Thorning, CEO, Ontario Community Support Association.

The Harris-Hudak PC government stuck municipalities with a $3 billion bill for provincial programs like seniors' drug costs. Ontario Liberals are reversing the damage with programs like the Seniors' Property Tax Deferral Program, putting communities on a stable footing so they can plan for the future.

The Hudak PCs have already proposed new downloads which, in a community like Ottawa, would make property tax bills skyrocket by at least 6 per cent — costing the average family about $186 per year.

They have no plan for improving home care, focusing instead on warehousing seniors in institutions. The $14 billion hole in their platform would also mean cuts to health care, transit and other services seniors rely on.

The NDP have no practical plan to improve home care, pledging only to conduct a "comprehensive review" — not take action.

"Making it easier for seniors to remain in their homes can mean an enormous improvement in their quality of life and help keep them connected to friends, family and their community," Naqvi said.

Only Ontario Liberals have a plan for ensuring that today's seniors — and the coming generation of baby-boomer seniors — will be the healthiest and most-engaged seniors in Ontario's history.

"Ontario Liberals have the record, the team, the plan and the strong steady leadership of Dalton McGuinty to move Ontario forward, together," Naqvi said.


backgrounder


September 19, 2011

ONTARIO LIBERALS' SENIORS' PROPERTY TAX DEFERRAL PROGRAM

The Ontario Liberals' Seniors' Property Tax Deferral Program will help seniors who want to remain in their homes by letting them defer increases in property taxes as long as they choose to stay.

SUPPORTING SENIORS' CHOICES

It's a step forward not just for seniors, but for all Ontarians.

Seniors are our parents and grandparents — the people whose hard work built Ontario's schools, hospitals and health care, business and industry and our communities. Our seniors' population is expected to grow by 43 per cent over the next decade, and many seniors today lead busy and active lives.

Many of our seniors want to remain in their own homes as long as they are able. In some cases, the value of their homes has increased while they remain on fixed incomes. Our Seniors' Property Tax Deferral Program makes it possible for them to stay in their homes even as their property taxes have gone up.

PROPERTY TAX DEFERRAL

This program will let senior homeowners defer any increases in municipal property taxes until their house is sold. Both the municipal and education portions of the tax will be deferred. The province will cover the interest cost of the deferred property tax.

While some municipalities, such as Ottawa, have their own property tax deferral programs, our Seniors' Property Tax Deferral Program will apply to all of the estimated 1.3 million seniors in Ontario who are homeowners.

MORE SUPPORT FOR SENIORS

The Seniors' Property Tax Deferral Program is one the measures Ontario Liberals are offering to help our seniors to stay in their own homes as long as they choose.

Family members will be guaranteed up to eight weeks leave from their jobs to take care of parents, grandparents or seriously ill family members.

We're bringing back house calls — doctors, nurses and health professionals such as occupational therapists will come calling.

And seniors and their families can benefit from new renovation tax credits of up to $1,500 per year for renovations such as walk-in tubs and railings so it's easier to stay in their own homes.

The Ontario Liberal Plan works to help seniors, their families and all Ontarians by making home care easier. The Hudak PCs have no plan for improving home care, focusing instead on warehousing seniors in institutions. The $14 billion hole in their platform would also mean cuts to health care, transit and other services seniors rely on.

The NDP have no practical plan to improve home care, pledging only to conduct a "comprehensive review" — not take action.

Only Ontario Liberals have a plan for ensuring that today's seniors — and the coming generation of baby-boomer seniors — will be the healthiest and most-engaged seniors in Ontario's history.

SOURCE Ontario Liberal Party

For further information:

Ontario Liberal Party Media Office:
416 961-3800 ext. 328

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