21st century requires 21st century education

By MPP Toby Barrett As a former teacher and the son and grandson of teachers, I’m convinced of the opportunities created for citizens through education. Regardless of background, every student needs access to skills and knowledge for a fair start in life; to do their best, and to be better prepared for the work world … Continue reading “21st century requires 21st century education”

Everyone deserves quality, reliable health care

By MPP Toby Barrett Of all the services provided by the provincial level of government, health care consistently remains the number one priority for people in Ontario. Every family expects high quality health care to be there when they need it. Health sector spending accounts for about 46 cents of every tax dollar allocated. But, … Continue reading “Everyone deserves quality, reliable health care”

Government transparency, accountability lacking

By MPP Toby Barrett In the past week, Ontario Ombudsman André Marin has called on the McGuinty government to lift the veil of secrecy following his investigations revealing a lack of transparency and accountability. As anyone familiar with the Ombudsman’s Office knows, its role is to ensure government works in the best interests of its … Continue reading “Government transparency, accountability lacking”

Families / governments must live within their means

By MPP Toby Barrett For Ontario to lead again, we must make the decisions necessary to balance the budget in a responsible way. Ontario’s Auditor General, Jim McCarter, has advised residents to take the McGuinty pledge to limit spending to 1.8 per cent a year with a “moderately big grain of salt,”. In his recent … Continue reading “Families / governments must live within their means”

Now is the time for a renewed focus on farming

By MPP Toby Barrett Strong farms are vital to a strong Haldimand-Norfolk and a strong Ontario. And a strong rural Ontario needs a healthy and sustainable agricultural sector – one that provides opportunities for the next generation of families to continue to earn a living from farming. Government does have a role to play – … Continue reading “Now is the time for a renewed focus on farming”

The untold cost of wind and solar experiments

By MPP Toby Barrett The wind tower debate has heated up in recent weeks – both in the media and at public meetings in Port Rowan, Port Dover and Hagersville. As well, Dalton McGuinty sent brochures to homes in Haldimand-Norfolk – and the ridings of Opposition Leader Tim Hudak, MPPs Hardeman, and Klees – suggesting … Continue reading “The untold cost of wind and solar experiments”

Scrap the HST on electricity and home heating!

By MPP Toby Barrett Last week, I hosted a news conference in the Cayuga Village Green to announce a commitment to provide immediate relief for families, by removing the HST from home hydro and heating bills, and removing the ‘debt retirement charge’ on home hydro bills. The commitment encompasses three specific action steps: First, the … Continue reading “Scrap the HST on electricity and home heating!”

New tobacco law will not eliminate contraband

By MPP Toby Barrett Recently, I debated yet another tobacco bill in the Ontario Legislature. Bill 186 is titled Supporting Smoke-Free Ontario by Reducing Contraband Tobacco. Looking at the name of the bill, I question why the McGuinty government has chosen to merely “reduce” instead of “eliminate” illegal tobacco? Eight years of tobacco tax hikes … Continue reading “New tobacco law will not eliminate contraband”