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Some highlights from Ontario New Democrats election platform

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TORONTO - Ontario's NDP Leader Andrea Horwath released her party's campaign platform Thursday.

Some highlights:

— raise corporate tax rate from 11.5 to 12.5 per cent and cut small business tax rate from 4.5 to 3 per cent

— eliminate Ontario's $12.5 billion deficit by 2017-18

— targeted tax cuts for companies that create jobs, up to $5,000 per employee, but with "strings attached" to make sure the strategy achieves its goals

— force the provincial regulator to order a 15 per cent cut to auto insurance premiums

— dedicated fund to provide $29 billion over 10 years for transit and transportation projects

— take the provincial portion of the HST off hydro bills, repeal the debt retirement charge, merge four hydro agencies

— cut emergency room wait times in half by using more nurse practitioners

— guarantee that patients discharged from hospital who need home care would get it within five days

— a $1,275 family caregiver tax credit to help seniors live at home

— open 50 new 24-hour family health clinics

— create a fund to prevent school closures and extend after-hour programs

— hire up to 1,000 more educational assistants in schools

— freeze college and university tuitions, make student loans interest-free and forgive up to $20,000 a year of student debt for doctors who agree to work in under-serviced areas

— appoint a minister of savings and accountability to save $600 million a year, starting in 2015-16

— spend less on government advertising and add online ads to the list of ads that's vetted by Ontario's auditor general

— appoint Financial Accountability Office

— restore Ontario Northland Rail passenger service

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