Flaherty Says Ontario Shouldn’t Drop Plan to Balance Budget

Ontario and the rest of Canada’s provinces shouldn’t give up plans to balance budgets over the medium term, Canadian Finance Minister Jim Flaherty said today.

Speaking to reporters in Toronto, where Ontario Finance Minister Charles Sousa is scheduled to give a budget update later today, Flaherty said “what I don’t want to hear from the government of Ontario is that they’re abandoning their plan” to balance the budget in the fiscal year that begins April 2017.

Flaherty said that while he recognizes the provinces can’t eliminate deficits “overnight, it can be done in the medium term.”

Flaherty also said he won’t raise taxes as part of the effort to bring Canada back to balance in the year beginning April 2015. The finance department is watching for signs of a bubble in Canada’s housing market, he said.

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