OCC – 2018 Election Platform

April 10, 2018

The Ontario Chamber of Commerce has developed, in consultation with its members: Vote Prosperity, its proposed platform for the 2018 provincial election campaign. It is focused on providing Ontario with a strategy to leverage our advantages and strengthen our global competitiveness.

Ontario is a great place to live and work, but the foundation of our prosperity is shifting as a number of factors are combining to limit business growth. These factors, coupled with high input costs such as rising electricity prices, a cap and trade regime, onerous labour law reforms and a burdensome regulatory environment, mean the cost of doing business in Ontario is high relative to our competitor jurisdictions.

In response, the OCC has developed Vote Prosperity, what it would like to see as an effective election platform. Its proposal looks at four factors and we’ve noted them point form below:

Strengthening Business Competitiveness

• Allow Ontario businesses to purchase surplus electricity at rates equal to or better than the exported price to other jurisdictions.
• Conduct and publish the results of a comprehensive review of the electricity sector, including an objective economic impact analysis assessing the full range of inputs that make up the Global Adjustment (GA), and then pursue cost-reducing measures based on the results.
• Pursue efforts to reduce Ontario’s greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in a manner that effectively mitigates risk to business competitiveness.
• Work with federal and local levels of government to establish a publicly available analysis of the cost of doing business (CODB) in Ontario.
• Reinstate scheduled reductions in the Corporate Income Tax, standardize the Business Education Tax, and reduce the Employer Health Tax.

Fostering Job Creation

• Modernize the apprenticeship system.
• Redesign Employment Ontario services for both job-seekers and employers and evaluate the potential of an outcomes-based funding model.
• Work with industry and post-secondary institutions to ensure that program offerings remain responsive to the changing labour market dynamics and the regional and sectoral needs of Ontario’s business community.
• Allocate resources to focus support on high growth firms and those with high growth potential, by delaying taxation on corporate income growth to overcome Ontario’s scale-up challenge.

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