Ontario unveiled a $186.1 billion provincial budget on Wednesday to weather the latest wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, promising record investments in healthcare infrastructure, small business support, and vaccination efforts.
The realities of the COVID-19 pandemic in Canada’s largest province have forced its Progressive Conservative government to do something it hasn’t historically enjoyed — go deeper into debt to fund social services and an eventual economic recovery. Ontario’s unemployment rate is currently at 9 percent. More than 7,200 Ontarians have died of the virus — or roughly 19 a day since the province’s first COVID-19 related death on March 11. The province is in the midst of a third wave of COVID-19 composed mainly of variants such as the U.K’s B.1.1.7.
Ontario Finance Minister Peter Bethlenfalvy defended the province’s spending in a forewo
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