TORONTO — Ontario introduced a $17-billion package Wednesday to provide COVID-19 relief. Here are some highlights:

— $1 billion for a COVID-19 contingency fund

— $935 million for the hospital sector, including for 1,500 more beds and additional COVID-19 assessment centres

— $75 million for personal protective equipment and critical medical supplies


— $200 (one-time) payments for parents for each child 12 years old and under

— $160 million for public health to support COVID-19 monitoring, surveillance and testing

— $243 million for the long-term care sector for surge capacity, screening, infection control and supplies

— Doubling Guaranteed Annual Income System payments for low-income seniors

— Suspending payments on Ontario Student Assistance Program loan repayments

— Five months of interest and penalty relief for businesses to file and make payments for provincially administered taxes, at an estimated cost of $6 billion

— $1.8 billion to defer municipal remittance of education property tax to school boards, allowing municipalities to provide property tax deferrals

— Allowing employers to defer Workplace Safety and Insurance Board payments, at a cost of about $1.9 billion

This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 25, 2020.

The Canadian Press

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