CONSERVATIVE PRE-ELECTION BUDGET SPENDS BILLIONS ON THE WEALTHIEST AND IGNORES LONDON’S REALITY

OTTAWA – The pre-election federal budget that was announced in Ottawa today contains many expenditures that don’t pay off until after 2017, well after the next federal election is decided, and will take several years afterwards to pay out.

“It’s a cynical move,” said Irene Mathyseen, MP for London-Fanshawe. “Designed to buy votes with no real obligation to follow up on anything vital to the average Canadian voter. We need investment in the future to begin now.”

While hundreds of thousands of good manufacturing jobs have disappeared from Ontario, the Conservatives have offered the barest minimum of support for manufacturing and failed to build a balanced economy. The budget fails to address London’s need for significant investments in housing and infrastructure, and provides no addition funding for new affordable housing, roads or bridges.

“This budget has failed to invest in infrastructure, and it has failed the people of London,“ said Mathyssen. “The Conservatives ignore that we should be building a legacy to leave to future generations – good jobs, safe roads, reliable public transit, safe drinking water and clean air – all for the short-term handouts crafted to win the next election. Canadians simply can’t afford to give them four more years.”

Mathyssen remarked that she is happy to see small business taxes reduced and some help for manufacturers, and pointed out that the positive measures in this election budget are actually taken from the NDP. And while the relaxed rules around RIFs for seniors are helpful, this budget does nothing for those who have no savings.

“We can absolutely do more to ensure retirement security for every Canadian, and the NDP has that plan – increase the CPP, and return the retirement age to 65 so we can ensure no Canadian senior lives in poverty. We need to create pension security for our seniors, health care, home care, pharmacare and a truly universal child care program to make life affordable for the people of London.”

New Democrats have proposed practical steps that will help fix the damage done by Stephen Harper and create good jobs and opportunities for the middle-class, including new supports for small businesses and manufacturing, a $15 federal minimum wage, and one million affordable childcare spots for just $15/day.