Today, Ontario Finance Minister Rod Phillips delivered what is technically his first, and the Ford Government’s second, full Ontario Budget. Our clients and regular readers will know that the Ontario budget is typically delivered in March, in anticipation of the government’s fiscal year which is from April 1st to March 31st In normal times, the Minister of Finance would rise in the Legislature in November to deliver a Fall Economic Statement. While these have come to be known as “mini budgets” they are more correctly a report on government finances after half of the fiscal year has passed.
If you will allow us one Captain Obvious moment, 2020 is anything but a normal year. With this province, this country and most of the world firmly in the grip of COVID-19’s second wave, the budget schedule has been turned upside down this year. You will recall that in March of this year, Finance Minister Phillips rose to table an economic update, a mini budget, which laid out the Ford government’s initial response to the pandemic. You’ll recall as well that Ontario essentially shut down in mid-March, and that Phillips’s mini budget was delivered some ten days later. The title of our analysis of that mini budget, “Extraordinary Times, Extraordinary Measures” is indicative of its contents.
Read the full analysis here.