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Federal Liberals ask Ontario government in pre-budget letter to reverse OSAP changes

Federal Labour Minister Patty Hajdu, who oversees federal student-support
programs, is asking her provincial counterpart to roll back changes made in January to OSAP.
Federal Labour Minister Patty Hajdu, who oversees federal student-support programs, is asking her provincial counterpart to roll back changes made in January to OSAP. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld

OTTAWA – The feud between the federal Liberals and the Ontario Tories is taking another turn in the run-up to the Doug Ford government’s first provincial budget.

Labour Minister Patty Hajdu, who oversees federal student-support programs, is asking her provincial counterpart to roll back changes the Progressive Conservatives made in January to the Ontario Student Assistance Plan.

READ MORE: Students walk out of classes across Ontario to protest OSAP changes

Among the changes was charging interest on loans during a six-month repayment “grace period” after graduation, a move the Tories said would reduce complexity for students and match rules for the federal Canada Student Loans Program.

Except the Trudeau Liberals announced changes to the federal program in their March budget to waive interest charges during the grace period.

WATCH: Ontario government announces changes to OSAP

Ontario government announces changes to OSAP
Ontario government announces changes to OSAP

In a letter sent Tuesday to Merrilee Fullerton, Ontario’s minister of training, colleges and universities, Hajdu asks the provincial government to abandon the change in the provincial budget and align again with federal standards.

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On Thursday, the Ontario government tables its first spending blueprint since being elected last year.