TORONTO, March 28, 2012 /CNW/ - The Society of Energy Professionals says that the Duncan budget represents an unprecedented attack on the broader public sector and recipients of public services and government support.
Rod Sheppard Society President says that "even though Ontario's per capital program spending is the lowest across the provinces and tax revenues as a percentage of GDP, are almost 15 per cent lower today than the ratio in 1994, the government will nevertheless reduce program spending by nearly $18 billion over the next three years."
Sheppard says that with program spending growth being held to an average of 0.9 per cent and with inflation expected to be about 2% a year hardship will follow.
"Cutting spending by that much will only worsen the social and economic problems many Ontarians are facing today." Sheppard said.
"We reject the narrative which says less government is always better government; a narrative that constructs public and broader public servants and recipients of public services as the cause of Ontario's financial woes"
The Society President said he was also concerned about the apparent willingness of the Government of Ontario to consider intervention in collective bargaining.
"Society members have a long history of responsible local bargaining sensitive to the interests of Ontario's citizens. Many of the government's proposals could seriously harm this record of success."
On pension issues Sheppard said the Society will hold the government to their promise that they will consult meaningfully on reforms.
"If the outcome is predetermined, then there is no point consulting. But if they really want to work with us we are ready with ideas and insights"
The Society of Energy Professionals represent more than 8300 engineers, telecommunications and information technology professionals, scientists and others who for generations have designed, built, operated and helped safeguard Ontario's vast electricity system. The Society's members work for Ontario Power Generation, Hydro One, Bruce Power, the IESO, the OEB, the ESA and other key electricity sector employers.
For further information:
416.979.2709 x 4002 Cell 647.404.8918
416.979.2709 x 3039 Cell 416.670.6835