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Sources say Doug Ford’s Ontario PC government intends to reveal a tax rebate of daycare costs when it tables its first budget on Thursday. (Christopher Katsarov/Canadian Press) Ontario Premier Doug Ford’s government is poised to make a child-care rebate a central feature of its first budget, CBC News has learned.

Sources close to the government say the Progressive Conservatives intend to reveal the rebate on daycare costs when Finance Minister Vic Fedeli tables the budget on Thursday.

The PCs promised the rebate during last year’s election campaign. It’s one of the few Ford campaign promises that is laid out in fine detail , as it was adopted wholesale from former PC leader Patrick Brown’s platform, dubbed the "People’s Guarantee."

The sources could not say whether the daycare rebate to be presented in the budget will be exactly what the PCs previously promised.

Ford’s spokesperson is neither confirming nor denying the plan.

"We can’t confirm tax changes that may or may not be in the budget," said Simon Jefferies, the premier’s director of media relations, in an email to CBC News. He said Ford and the PCs "campaigned on making child care more affordable and accessible, while ensuring parents have the flexibility and choice to make the best decisions for their family." The child-care rebate program promised by the Ontario PC party before it won the election would give similar amounts to families whose household income ranges from $53,000 to $135,000. (CBC) Before winning last June’s election, the PCs pledged: The government would give the lowest-income households a rebate of up to 75 per cent of eligible child-care costs, deemed to be $9,000 a year for a child younger than six. For most families, the rebate would range from 57 to 60 per cent of their daycare fees.

The maximum annual refunds would be: $6,750 per child under age six.

$3,750 per child aged six to 15.

$8,250 per child with a severe disability.

The rebate would be provided as a refundable tax credit rather than a tax deduction, so even if a parent pays no income tax he or she would still receive money from the government.

The current income tax deduction for child-care expenses would be eliminated.

Finance Minister Vic Fedeli will table the Ford government’s first budget on Thursday. (Nathan Denette/Canadian Press) While the PCs indicated the rebate would be geared to income, critics have said the structure proposed would unfairly benefit upper-income households. Households whose annual income is less than $35,000 would get the maximum rebate of 75 per cent of their child-care costs.

A family with annual household income of $52,850 would get a 60 per cent rebate.

A family with household income of $136,925 would get a 57 per cent rebate.

A family with household income of $200,000 would get a 28 per cent rebate

For a family that has one child under six, this means the maximum refunds would be: $5,400 if household income is $55,000. $5,400 if household income is $95,000. $5,130 if household income is $135,000. $2,520 if household income is $200,000. There is significant doubt about how much the program would cost. The rebate of daycare costs promised by Doug Ford is almost identical to the one Patrick Brown put in his campaign platform before he was forced to resign as PC leader. (CBC) When Brown promised the rebate, PC officials pegged the cost at $389 million a year. Ford used that precise cost figure in his list of campaign promises .However, a detailed analysis published in January by the non-partisan C.D. Howe Institute puts the initial cost at more than double […]

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