News Release: Source Office of the Premier
Premier Ford Reaffirms Commitment to Making Rural Ontario Open for Business
TORONTO — Ontario’s Government for the People is making sure rural communities are open for business by cutting red tape and making it easier to create and protect good-paying jobs.
Today, Premier Doug Ford spoke at the 2019 Rural Ontario Municipal Association (ROMA) conference, an annual event that brings together rural Ontario municipal leaders to discuss priorities and ways to strengthen their communities.
“For too long, rural Ontario has been ignored. Our hardworking farmers have been ignored,” said Ford. “Ontario’s economy relies on agriculture. Our natural resources and forestry industries are major economic drivers. We need to do everything in our power to get our farmers and rural businesses the support they need to grow and create more local jobs.”
Premier Ford highlighted the actions the government is taking to lighten regulatory burdens in more than a dozen sectors, and the positive effects these actions will have on the industries many rural communities rely on, including natural resources and agriculture. These actions will lower business costs, make it easier for farmers to run their businesses and make Ontario more competitive.
He addressed a long-standing request from municipalities and announced that the Ontario government intends to consult on joint and several liability. The government will look at evidence and develop solutions that make sense for the people.
The Premier also committed to delivering better health care to rural communities. The government is investing $175 million in infrastructure upgrades at 128 hospitals across Ontario, in places like Renfrew, Sarnia and Espanola.
“We promised to support our rural businesses and communities, and we’re keeping our promise,” said Ford. “We’re lowering electricity costs, we’re slashing red tape and we’re getting out of the way of businesses so they can focus on growing and creating jobs.”
- Ontario’s agriculture and agri-food sector is a key driver of the provincial economy, contributing $39.5 billion to the GDP and supporting more than 822,000 jobs.
- The provincial government recently launched an agricultural advisory committee, which will identify new directions for future industry growth and new ways to cut red tape.
- The government is committed to cutting the red tape affecting businesses by 25 per cent.
- Ontario recently passed the Making Ontario Open for Business Act, making it easier for employers across rural communities to grow their businesses and create and protect jobs.
- The government is making life more affordable for rural Ontario families and businesses by expanding natural gas access. Switching from propane, electric heat or oil to natural gas can save an average residential customer between $800 and $2,500 per year.