Reviews Are In: Ontario Liberals Are Building Ontario Up

QUEEN'S PARK, ON, April 23, 2015 /CNW/ - Today's Ontario Liberal budget makes significant investments that will make Ontario succeed now and into the future:

JOHN TORY, MAYOR OF TORONTO
"Today, we had further confirmation of the province's commitment to SmartTrack. The provincial budget explicitly commits to building regional express rail in the Kitchener and Stoufville rail corridors. Make no mistake, this is and always has been the very basis of SmartTrack. Toronto needs a strong equal partner to deliver SmartTrack and today's budget confirms we have such a partner in Premier Wynne and the Government of Ontario. The province is committing to significant investment in the shared infrastructure needed to deliver SmartTrack which is exactly what we hope for."

ALLAN O'DETTE, PRESIDENT, ONTARIO CHAMBER OF COMMERCE
"Infrastructure investment is among the most effective ways for government to create jobs and spur economic growth.  We're pleased to see this government taking leadership on modernizing infrastructure in the province."

VINCE MOLINARO, PRESIDENT, THE ONTARIO HOME BUILDERS' ASSOCIATION 
"People need better transit options. The province's massive transit investment should support the creation of transit-supported communities across Ontario.  Building complete communities along those transit lines makes sense and will provide new housing and employment options and choice where people can live, work and play."

JAN DE SILVA, PRESIDENT & CEO, TORONTO REGION BOARD OF TRADE
"Building public support for new revenue sources to build our region's needed transportation infrastructure has been at the forefront of our advocacy for many years. This funding will create good jobs while improving our region's productivity by modernizing our infrastructure to reduce congestion."

DR. PAUL KERSHAW, FOUNDER OF GENERATION SQUEEZE, PROFESSOR IN THE UBC SCHOOL OF POPULATION HEALTH
"After analyzing all provincial and federal budgets tabled so far in 2015, her commitment to make Canada work for all generations is matched by few, if any, other leaders provincially or federally."

MATT STEWART, PRESIDENT, COLLEGE STUDENT ALLIANCE
"We're very pleased that the voices of college students across Ontario have been heard and are helping to provide direction in the government's strategy going forward to ensure access to a quality post-secondary education."

MATT CARON, DIRECTOR OF ADVOCACY, COLLEGE STUDENT ALLIANCE
"This year's budget serves to improve the quality and accessibility of post-secondary education in Ontario. Quality education clearly remains a funding priority and we're happy the government is investing in Ontario's college students. The inclusion of CSA's recommendation of eliminating the requirement for students to report their vehicle as an asset will create opportunities for current and potential college students, making post-secondary education more accessible."

JEN CARTER, PRESIDENT, ONTARIO UNDERGRADUATE STUDENT ALLIANCE
"The new changes to in-study income will have the ability to reduce these types of debt and ensure that young graduates are sooner able to meaningfully contribute to the economy. When making our budget recommendations, we outlined ways in which the government could use existing resources allocated to post-secondary in ways that would provide greater assistance to students. We are thankful to see that our suggestions were taken into account in the creation of this budget."

ANTHONY DALE, PRESIDENT AND CEO, ONTARIO HOSPITAL ASSOCIATION
"The Ontario Hospital Association commends the government for moving forward with a comprehensive capacity planning framework for health services. Because of growing financial pressures, this effort will help decision makers make the right strategic investments for health care both in the short-term and the long-term so Ontarians continue to have access to high quality care where and when they need it. This is very positive news and it is essential that we get to work right away."

RICK FIRTH, PRESIDENT, CEO, HOSPICE PALLIATIVE CARE ONTARIO
"The government continues to demonstrate its strong commitment to improving access to quality hospice palliative care in Ontario.  Hospice Palliative Care Ontario is delighted with the government's latest investment, this time recognizing the vital role trained volunteers play in supporting patients and their families in the last days of life."

TIM LENARTOWYCH, DIRECTOR OF NURSING AND HEALTH POLICY, RNAO
"So registered nurses and nurse practitioners are very much encouraged by the government's commitment to the full and expanded scope, fully utilizing all of our health care professionals' well improved access to care as well as patient outcomes"

MICHAEL NASHAT, PHARMD RPH, ONPHARM INC. 
"Allowing Pharmacists to provide travel vaccines to patients, ensures that Ontarians have access to quality care that is close to their home. It also supports the path to optimal health system utilization. OnPharm Inc. and its affiliated pharmacy members are pleased that they will be able to better contribute to a collaborative and patient centric healthcare system."

DR. DORIS GRINSPUN, REGISTERED NURSES ASSOCIATION OF ONTARIO
"We commend the Ontario government for taking an important step to deal with the effects of climate change. Putting a price on carbon is an essential move if we are to deal with the devastating effects of our changing environment."

KEITH BROOKS, ENVIRONMENTAL DEFENSE
"There's lots of good things in this budget for the environment. There's good action on climate change in the near term. Putting a price on carbon. Commitments to energy conservation and renewable energy. And there's lots of talk about things that need to be done in the long term. In terms of building transportation infrastructure, building electrified rail,‎ regional rail, high speed rail and getting people out of cars and onto transit."

BRIAN PATTERSON, ONTARIO SAFETY LEAGUE 
"The Ontario Safety League congratulates the Minister of Finance on the budget support for road safety by encouraging the use of winter tires. The combination of an incentive to use and the expected public education next year will increase voluntary use by drivers across the Province. The science and now the Province are in sync. Other jurisdictions are expected to follow shortly. "Four winter tires for winter driving" now a motto endorsed by the budget and the Province. Safety leads again."

SOURCE Liberal Caucus Service Bureau

For further information: 416-577-6350

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