TORONTO – Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne says the budget her re-elected Liberal government will introduce next month will be “identical” to the one presented May 1 that triggered the election.
Wynne is anxious to have the legislature resume July 2 so the Liberals can start to implement their plan to invest billions of dollars in transit and infrastructure projects and lay the ground work for a provincial pension plan.
She won’t confirm that Charles Sousa will stay on as finance minister, but admits the budget will look exactly like the one he presented and the opposition parties rejected.
Wynne says there may be some technical changes that will be dealt with in the finance minister’s speech, but “in terms of the policies and the investments, it will be the identical budget.”
The premier says she was “more stunned than anything” early in the election campaign when Progressive Conservative Leader Tim Hudak announced he would cut 100,000 public-sector jobs if he won the election.
But she says the Liberals were re-elected to a majority government because they offered voters a positive plan for the future.
Wynne beams with pride when she talks about how being openly gay was never an issue during the campaign – or after when headlines proclaimed she was the first woman elected as premier in Ontario – even though her partner Jane Rounthwaite was at her side at every stop and photo opportunity.
“You know Jane and I travelled the whole 42 days on the bus and we were warmly welcomed in communities in every corner of this province,” she said in an interview with The Canadian Press. “This is a beautiful place in which we live.”