Dwight Duncan defends provincial budget

Ontario's finance minister is busy defending the budget he revealed Tuesday at Queen's Park.
CBC Windsor's Susan Pedler grills finance minister Dwight Duncan about his provincial budget. 5:39

Ontario's finance minister, Dwight Duncan, is busy defending the provincial budget he revealed Tuesday at Queen's Park.

The minister said Ontarians understand why the cuts and wage freezes had to be so deep and solid, respectively.

"It’s about the middle. Ontarians understand the need to get back to balance," Duncan told CBC Windsor's Tony Doucette on the Early Shift. "We are resolved to do what’s in the best interest of all Ontarians. That’s to get back to balance by 2017."

The government plans to balance its books in five years by taking a tough stand in upcoming labour talks with public sector workers, and through sweeping changes to government pension plans.

Duncan said the province will "take whatever means necessary to get back to balance."

That includes legislating wage freezes, if necessary.

"Our hope is our bargaining partners will help us," Duncan said.

But the minister followed that comment by revealing he "expects to be challenged in court."

Duncan said the law is "fuzzy" when it comes to whether the government can legislate wage freezes.