Deficit/debt reduction and new models for service delivery critical
TORONTO, March 13, 2012 /CNW/ - The Certified General Accountants of Ontario today released a report with detailed recommendations for the 2012 Ontario budget.
The recommendations offer a balance between the need for restraint along with transformative initiatives to generate economic growth.
"For many years, we've encouraged the government of Ontario to take immediate steps towards achieving a balanced budget," said Puneet Luthra, Director, Public Policy and Government Relations, CGA Ontario. "We're hopeful the upcoming budget will include necessary measures to achieve this."
Key recommendations in CGA Ontario's report include:
1) Return to a balanced budget and reduce the overall debt
CGA Ontario proposes that cautious yet effective spending should be the government's primary focus. Annual spending increases should be limited to less than one per cent.
Once the budget is balanced, surplus funds should go towards reducing the overall provincial debt. In particular, a minimum $2 billion should be allocated annually as follows:
- At least 50 per cent for debt repayment;
- 25 percent for needed infrastructure maintenance spending;
- Remaining 25 percent for the emergency reserve.
2) Identify new delivery models for publicly funded programs and services
While a limit on spending growth is critical to return to a balanced budget, a fundamental shift in the delivery of publicly funded programs and services to Ontarians is also needed.
As CGA Ontario has stated in previous submissions, the government must address key questions including:
- Can a program or service be redesigned to be more efficient and deliver intended results?
- Should the government be involved in a program or service?
- Are there administrative savings that can be realized?
Additional details and recommendations can be found in CGA Ontario's report on the 2012 provincial budget:
CGA Ontario is a self-governing body that grants the exclusive rights to the CGA designation, and controls the professional standards, conduct and discipline of its members and students in the province of Ontario. Certified general accountants (CGAs) are committed to meeting the needs of their businesses and organizations with strategic insight, leadership and demonstrated abilities. In Ontario, there are more than 21,000 CGAs and approximately 8,000 students working towards their designation. www.cga-ontario.org / www.cga-domore.org
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