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Ted Arnott's Responses to 2014 Provincial Election Questionnaire

On June 12, 2014, Halton voters will cast their ballot for local provincial election candidates. On behalf of Halton residents, Regional Chair Gary Carr has sent a letter and questionnaire to local candidates asking how they would resolve critical issues facing Halton.

The following are Ted Arnott's responses to 2014 Provincial Election Questionnaire.

Ted Arnott

Ted Arnott
Wellington Halton Hills - Conservative
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  1. Halton Region requests that the Provincial Government provide predictable funding to keep Halton moving and deliver on committed projects through the Metrolinx Plan, The Big Move, including all day GO service to Milton and Georgetown, and the electrification of the Lakeshore GO line, to meet the transportation needs of our growing community. What will you and your government do to ensure that Halton’s Metrolinx projects are delivered within the next 5 years?

    Our PC Party's platform proposes that the Government should be in charge of all rail transit and highways in the GTA in order to better connect Toronto and the “905.” This would give commuters a seamless system. We have proposed expanding our highways by fixing bottlenecks throughout the GTA. We also hope to expand GO Transit with more rush hour service, more express trains, and more all day, two-way service. Our goal is to accomplish this without raising taxes, by making transit a top priority in the province’s existing $12 billion infrastructure budget.

    I have also repeatedly called on the Government to reverse their decision to cancel the Connecting Link program, a program which provided municipalities with a stable source of funding for up to 90% of the cost of road and bridge repairs on provincial highways through built up areas. The Town of Halton Hills’ 5 year capital program, for example, included $9.3 million in needed projects along Connecting Link roadways. Under this program, up to 90% of this cost would have been covered by the Provincial Government. Now local taxpayers are on the hook for the entire amount.

    I would want to ensure that Halton receives its fair share of available government funding.
  2. What will your government do to ensure that Halton’s growing communities have the necessary community infrastructure, such as schools and health care facilities, in place to keep pace with the growth?

    I have worked with local officials to seek government support for the Georgetown Hospital's renovations, helping to secure a provincial grant of up to $2.6 million for the project. I have also worked with Halton Catholic School Board to seek approval for a new Holy Cross Catholic School in Georgetown. We need to ensure that our health and education infrastructure keeps up with the needs of our communities as they grow.
  3. Halton’s school boards receive the lowest per capital funding in the Province and they have recently learned that their operating and capital costs are being cut. Being a growing region, particularly in Milton, Canada’s fastest growing community, funding is urgently needed and without it, we will not be able to keep up with the provincial mandated growth. What will you and your government do to increase Halton’s school board’s funding to enable them to meet their students’ needs?

    If local school board and municipal Councils were to seek my assistance on school board funding issues and provide me with detailed facts, I would be happy to work with them to seek a positive outcome for our students.
  4. Will your government move forward with Niagara to GTA transportation corridor? If so, will you commit to voting against any option that impacts the Niagara Escarpment?

    Our Ontario PC Leader Tim Hudak is a Niagara-area MPP. In the past, he has supported the construction of a new mid-peninsula highway, as it is strongly supported in Niagara Region. This issue has been discussed for decades. I would hope to ensure that the Region of Halton has a fair hearing of its concerns, before any final decisions on the final route and possible construction of a new mid-peninsula highway are made.
  5. Halton Region requests funding sources that support the recovery and collection of growth related costs to ensure that Halton’s taxpayers do not bear the financial impacts of growth. What will your government do to ensure this?

    Again, if re-elected, I am prepared to work with the Region of Halton and together, present our case to the Government, regardless of which party may be in power.
  6. Changes to the Development Charges (DC) Act is necessary to recover growth costs, including: include all services funded by a municipality in the Act, remove the 10 per cent discount for all services, replace the 10 year advantage historic service limits with a service level that is forward looking, remove mandatory exemptions. Will your party amend the DC Act to ensure that taxpayers are not burdened with the costs of growth?

    The Ontario PC Party platform does not make reference to the Development Charges Act. However, I agree with the general principle that growth should pay for itself. If the Region of Halton wishes to suggest specific amendments to the Act, I would want to bring those ideas forward and seek to ensure these suggestions are given careful study and consideration.
  7. Halton Region invests $26 million annually to provide assisted housing options for low income residents and we have had an increase of 894 in affordable/assisted housing units since 2007. What long term funding commitments will you and your government make to create real and affordable housing solutions in Halton?

    Housing is a basic need in our Province. All orders of government should continue to work together to ensure an adequate supply of decent, affordable housing. The Region of Halton has shown leadership in the provision of affordable housing, and I hope to be able to continue to support their efforts.
  8. What will you and you government do to deliver long-term, sustainable funding at the expected (agreed upon) levels of cost sharing for Public Health programs and Paramedic Services?

    Obviously, the Government of Ontario should live up to the financial commitments which have been made to the Regions, Counties, and local municipalities. If the Liberal Government has reneged on these commitments, municipalities have little choice but to raise property taxes to fund the shortfalls. It is unfair to municipalities for the Province to ignore the increases in costs of delivering these important shared services.
  9. Will you and your government commit to taking immediate action to address offloading delays and enhancements to the Central Ambulance Communications Centre (CACC) to ensure that Halton residents receive the level of Paramedic Services required to meet their needs? If so, how?

    If re-elected, I would want to meet with Region of Halton officials to coordinate a strategy to ensure that problems are fixed and Halton residents receive the paramedic services they deserve.
  10. Will you and your government honour the 2008 commitment to continue to the upload of social service and court costs until full implementation in 2018?

    I would hope to see the uploading of social service and court costs continue as planned. However, the Drummond report, commissioned by the Liberal Government, recommended that the full implementation of municipal uploading be extended by two years, to 2020.
  11. Are you willing to vote against your party’s platform on issues that negatively affect Halton Region?

    I agree that there should be more free votes in our Legislatures and Parliament, to allow elected representatives to be seen to be representing their constituents.

    I support our Party's leader and his election platform. I believe our platform represents the best plan for Ontario for the coming years, and the best plan for Halton residents.

    However, my constituents have always come first, and I will always fight for the vital interests of the people of Wellington-Halton Hills.