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The province also says the Ontario Cannabis Retail Corporation, created to manage sales and distribution of recreational pot, expects an $8-million loss in 2017-2018, followed by a $40-million loss in 2018-19, largely due to startup costs.

Karen Gventer, Bruce-Grey-Owen Sound's provincial NDP candidate, said the budget fails Ontarians. "It left a lot of people out of pharmacare, it left a lot of people out of child care, it left a lot of people out of dental care".

The Liberal's child care program, she added, would not cover daycare costs for children under two-and-a-half.

"You can't take care of the most vulnerable people in society when you have billions of dollars in debt", Doug Ford said on Wednesday.

The $158.5 billion fiscal plan - coming a little more than two months before the June 7 provincial election - projects Ontario will run a $6.7 billion deficit this fiscal year and not return to balance until 2024-2025. The government says that in 2018, 8.6 million individuals would pay roughly the same tax, but 1.8 million people would pay approximately $200 more.

Winners and losers from the 2018 Ontario budget

" She think she's Oprah but she's not got the money Oprah has", MacLeod said.

Ontarians want an end to "this scandal-ridden government", she said, and "are exhausted of broken promises and wasteful spending".

"While we would have appreciated a greater focus on the organizations that deliver these services, the budget does invest significant amounts in the sector that will help address a number of its challenges in serving people with disabilities and seniors", Annett said.

Dobbyn said she is pleased to see that Ontario Works and Ontario Disability Support Payment rates will increase by three per cent annually for the next three years, keeping the hikes in pace with inflation.

The government said the free child-care program was developed after consultations with parents and educators and on the advice of economist Gordon Cleveland. The plan includes free prescription drugs for everyone under 25, and 65 or over, through the biggest expansion of medicare in a generation, free tuition for hundreds of thousands of students, a higher minimum wage and better working conditions and easier access to affordable child care.





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