The Canadian Press has learned that Ontario will be announcing free dental care for low-income seniors in Thursday’s budget.
Senior government sources say anyone 65 and over in the province making under $19,300 — or $32,300 for couples — would qualify.
The service could be accessed through public health units, community health centres and aboriginal health access centres, with the potential for mobile dental units in the future.
One of the sources, who were not authorized to speak publicly about the budget item, said preventable dental issues lead to more than 60,000 emergency visits per year, a “significant portion” of which are by seniors.
The program will cost nearly $100 million per year.
The Progressive Conservatives promised free dental care for low-income seniors in their election platform last year.
In addition, the Premier was in the GTHA Tuesday, making a pitch about changes that will be proposed in the budget.
While delivering a speech to the Burlington, Halton Hills, Oakville and Milton chambers of commerce, he said his government has sent a clear message from day one that Ontario is open for business and is committed to cutting red tape for businesses with pro-job legislation.
He also slammed the federal government’s carbon tax.
“Last week my friend’s, the Trudeau carbon tax hit this province like a ton of bricks. This is a terrible, terrible tax,” he said.
Premier Ford also said his government is moving ahead with subways for Toronto.
“[We’re] putting shovels in the ground, we are going to do it faster, cheaper and a lot better than the city could do it,” he said.