Ford plans to form special committee to probe province’s fiscal situation

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TORONTO — Premier Doug Ford says his government plans to strike a special committee to further investigate Ontario’s fiscal situation in light of a newly reviewed multibillion-dollar deficit.

Ford says the select committee will have the power to call witnesses, compel documents and gather evidence.

His announcement comes days after the finance minister said an independent commission of inquiry found the practices of the previous Liberal government had resulted in a $15-billion projected deficit for 2018-2019.

The Liberals had disagreed with the auditor general over accounting principles applied to two pensions plans and its Fair Hydro Plan, a situation the fiscal watchdog said resulted in the province understating its deficit by billions.

Ford says a motion to strike the select committee will be put forward in the legislature today.

The Progressive Conservative government says it plans to have the committee investigate accounting practices, decision making and policy objectives of the previous government.

The Canadian Press