New Democratic Party Leader Andrea Horwath laid out her conditions for supporting the minority Liberal government on Tuesday, including having the 1 per cent in Ontario pay higher income taxes.
Ms. Horwath is calling on the government to use the annual revenues of $570-million a year from higher taxes on those who earn more than $500,000 a year to help low-income families with everything from home-heating costs to child-care spaces.
“Ontario’s not going to prosper if households are falling further behind,” Ms. Horwath said. “If we have to choose between a working mom who needs help with the kids or a CEO who needs help with a seven-figure paycheque, let’s help that mom.”
Ms. Horwath, the leader who holds the political cards in Ontario at the moment, made it clear that Tuesday’s announcement is just the first in a series of budget proposals designed to save the government.
The proposals follow a series of behind-the-scenes talks between the chiefs of staff for Ms. Horwath and Premier Dalton McGuinty, house leaders for both parties, and Liberal MPP Greg Sorbara and NDP MPP Rosario Marchese.
Mr. McGuinty has said repeatedly that he is open to hearing what Ms. Horwath has to say but that he won’t consider any proposals that involve spending more money.