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Run-away expenses show political welfare must be scrapped

Jay Goldberg Aug 11, 2021 | Ontario

Toronto, ON – The Canadian Taxpayers Federation is calling on the Ford government to end Ontario’s political welfare regime as financial disclosures show tens of thousands of dollars in wasteful spending among the province’s major political parties.

“Ontario’s political parties like to claim that they cannot survive without taking millions of dollars out of taxpayers’ pockets, but financial statements show that Ontario politicians are spending money like water,” said Jay Goldberg, the CTF’s Interim Ontario Director. “Ontario’s major political parties are spending a lot of money and asking taxpayers to pick up the tab through millions of dollars in taxpayer-funded subsidies.”

Under Ontario’s political welfare regime, taxpayers are forced to hand out millions of dollars to Ontario’s political parties four times a year. Ontario political parties are now taking advances of $10 million on payments that are scheduled to be paid out after the next election. By the next election, taxpayers will have given political parties over $60 million in subsidies over a period of four years.

Ontario’s political parties are required to disclose their expenses to Elections Ontario each year. Budget items in the parties’ 2020 reports include the Progressive Conservatives spending $191,000 on meetings, the NDP spending $84,000 on postage, and the Liberals spending $134,000 on office and equipment rentals.

“Elections Ontario’s disclosers show political parties should stop wasting money instead of taking more money from taxpayers,” said Goldberg. “Ford promised to repeal the province’s political welfare system, and it’s high time that the government deliver. The party with taxpayers’ money needs to end.”