More Experts Agree: McGuinty Government Investing in "Skills to Jobs" for all Ontarians



    QUEEN'S PARK, ON, March 26 /CNW/ - Experts from all sectors continue to
agree that the Ontario Budget builds on the progress the McGuinty Government
has made to date:

    David Miller, Mayor, Toronto

    "This budget, I think, is very good news. It invests where we need
investment. The No. 1 concern of business leaders across Toronto is
transportation." (Globe & Mail, March 26, 2008)

    Hamilton Spectator Editorial

    "The province rightly continues to see education and health care as
fundamental priorities; together they eat up nearly 70 per cent of the
$96-billion budget." (Editorial, March 26, 2008)

    David Naylor, President, University of Toronto

    "The Government of Ontario today pledged a range of helpful investments
in the university sector across the province - from infrastructure funding to
programs that will strengthen university research and student access to
universities. We are certainly encouraged by this government's understanding
of universities' central role in the province's global competitiveness."

    Karen Philp, Vice President, Government Affairs, Canadian Diabetes
Association

    "The Canadian Diabetes Association applauds the Government of Ontario for
keeping its commitment to Ontarians living with and affected by diabetes.
We're encouraged to see the Minister of Finance demonstrate an understanding
of the benefits of investing in diabetes."

    Tom Closson, President and CEO, Ontario Hospital Association

    "We welcome the government's initiative to reduce wait times in emergency
departments and look forward to working collaboratively on its
implementation."

    Terry Sullivan, President & CEO, Cancer Care Ontario

    "Cancer Care Ontario applauds the Ontario government's Budget commitment
to increase cancer screening rates for breast, cervical and colorectal
cancers. This funding will enable us to detect more cancers early and save
lives."

    Waterloo Region Record Editorial

    "The centrepiece of this budget -- a $1.5 billion program for skills
retraining -- is a solid and promising move." (Editorial, March 26, 2008)

    Andrew Pawluch, President, Ontario Student Trustees' Association

    "This budget is a victory for the students of Ontario. The government has
affirmed its commitment to an equitable, engaging and eco-friendly education.
Raising student achievement remains at the core of funding announcements and
we can be excited about the future of education in this province. New funding
will serve to ensure schools provide safe and supportive communities of
learning."

    Leah Myers, President, Durham College

    "We're very pleased with the government's investment today in the budget.
It really recognizes the skills training needs of Ontarians ... it recognizes
the role that colleges can play to offer training opportunities for people
that are one or two years in duration and that will lead to meaningful jobs.
And that's what I believe people are looking for with the changes in our
economy." (Port Hope Evening Guide, March 26, 2008)

    Dan Patterson, President, Niagara College

    "A well-educated and highly skilled workforce is essential to the
prosperity of Niagara and our province. The budget investments into the
education and training of our workforce will help more businesses and
industries to compete, and help more people to fulfil their potential and find
meaningful and well-paying jobs." (St. Catharines Standard, March 26, 2008)

    Paul Hartung, Executive Director, Trent Valley Literacy Association

    "If we can help get the people we have here now into the workforce and
create stronger attachments I think it will be a great benefit to the
province. It is good news that money is being focused on training and
retraining." (Peterborough Examiner, March 26, 2008)

    Denis Thibault, Executive Director, Eastern Ontario Training Board

    "The idea of increasing the number of apprenticeships is a major step. We
have a shortage of skilled workers in Ontario. You can only increase the
number of skilled workers by getting more apprentices into place." (Cornwall
Standard-Freeholder, March 26, 2008)

    Peter George, President, McMaster University

    "Today's investments, together with previously announced campus renewal
funding, will ensure that Ontario universities have the modern facilities to
educate students and conduct research." (Hamilton Spectator, March 26, 2008)

    Kris Barnier, Provincial Affairs Specialist, CAA Ontario

    "This budget clearly shows the Ontario government understands the need
for a multi-pronged approach to sustainable transportation."

    Maureen Piercy, President, Loyalist College

    A heavy emphasis in the Ontario budget on retraining those who have lost
their jobs found a warm reception at Loyalist College. The budget contained
$180 million for community colleges - $75 million for expansion of
apprenticeship training programs, $45 million for equipment for training and
$60 million for overall equipment renewal, said Loyalist president
Maureen Piercy. "Obviously, we are very pleased about that. I just think it's
tremendous news." (Belleville Intelligencer, March 26, 2008)





For further information:

For further information: Brian Clow, bclow@liberal.ola.org

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ONTARIO BUDGET REACTION 2008

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