Awash in cash, Ontario's Dalton McGuinty-led Liberal government on Tuesday opted against broad-based corporate tax relief like the kind called for by federal Tories.
Instead, the 2008 budget tabled at Queen's Park announces both a massive, $5-billion revenue windfall as well as a range of spending initiatives worth roughly the same amount.
In laying out the spending measures -- including $1-billion on infrastructure and $1.5-billion over three years for jobs and skills retraining -- Finance Minister Dwight Duncan sloughed off pressure from his federal counterpart, Jim Flaherty.
In recent weeks Flaherty has waged a high-profile campaign aimed at curbing what he sees as destructive tax and spend policies of the provincial Liberals. "I'm not going to speculate on what motivates Mr. Flaherty or the federal government," Mr. Duncan told reporters when asked about the unusually aggressive tact by Flaherty and his colleagues.