CGA Ontario Responds to the 2010-11 Provincial Ontario Budget

TORONTO, March 25 /CNW/ - The Certified General Accountants of Ontario (CGA Ontario) acknowledges today's budget announcement as a step in the right direction on a long road of recovery for the province of Ontario. Several vital recommendations put forth by CGA Ontario were recognized, specifically: investing in the financial services sector, staying the course on tax reform, supporting accessibility to post-secondary education and on-going professional development. However, the need to manage the record high provincial deficit fell short of expectation and will likely have profound implications for Ontario's economy.

CGA Ontario would like the government to achieve more aggressive numbers than forecasted in an attempt to balance the budget prior to 2017-18 as defined today.

"We're concerned with the government's modest plan to scale down the province's deficit at such gradual rates over the next seven years, yet we recognize that recovery is fragile and steps are being taken to move forward, albeit slowly," said Doug Brooks, FCGA, CEO, Certified General Accountants of Ontario. "We strongly encourage the provincial government to conduct a more in depth cost review of department and program spending."

Toronto is the hub of the financial sector in Canada and one of the largest financial service centres in North America. The provincial government will provide financial service sector support to stimulate economic growth while protecting the interests of consumers and investors. It plans to do this through strategic partnerships, developing a financial services leadership council, and working with the federal government and interested provinces and territories to establish a Canadian securities regulator and more.

"CGA Ontario credits the government for its investment in the financial services sector and for staying the course on tax reform, as it attracts and sustains business investments, creates jobs and further supports economic development," said Ted Wigdor, vice-president of government and corporate affairs.

The government's decision to stay the course on its previously announced tax reforms will not only contribute to job creation; it will drive a more competitive marketplace. CGA Ontario reaffirms its support for HST and is working hard to ensure that Ontario businesses have tools to assist them in a successful transition to the new system. Certified general accountants (CGAs) are also lending their expertise in developing sales tax compliance systems for clients.

Knowledge will be the key resource in the new economy, particularly in emerging technologies. CGA Ontario is pleased to see an increased investment of $310 million for post-secondary education, with 20,000 new spaces available within colleges and universities as of September 2010.

Although the implementation of the Second Career training program is constructive in helping an anticipated 60,000 laid-off employees, it does not account for senior professionals. Additional support is needed.

Certified General Accountants of Ontario is a self-governing body that grants the exclusive right to the CGA designation, and controls the rigorous professional standards of accreditation and professionalism in accounting to protect the public interest for its 20,000 CGAs and 8,000 students who are working towards their CGA designation in the province of Ontario.

SOURCE Certified General Accountants of Ontario

For further information: For further information: Amy Mulhern, Manager, Public Relations, CGA Ontario, Telephone: (416) 544-4781, 1-800-668-1454 ext. 8311, Email: amulhern@cga-ontario.org

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Certified General Accountants of Ontario

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ONTARIO BUDGET 2010

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