Bud­get con­sul­ta­tions don’t need to be in-per­son

The Compass - - EDITORIAL -

Spring is around the cor­ner, which means nicer and warmer weather (we hope). It also means the provin­cial bud­get, which will be the sec­ond bud­get of this cur­rent gov­ern­ment.

Al­ready we’re hear­ing about spend­ing cuts. Gov­ern­ment is look­ing for $244 mil­lion or more in sav­ings, so you can imag­ine the thoughts of peo­ple in the prov­ince when they hear the word cut. Af­ter last year’s ter­ri­ble bud­get, fear is in the air.

Still gov­ern­ment is go­ing ahead with pre-bud­get con­sul­ta­tions. These con­sul­ta­tions started Feb. 2 and are go­ing to take place in dif­fer­ent lo­ca­tions around the prov­ince.

While there is some value in these and you can go to see dif­fer­ent gov­ern­ment min­is­ters and MHAs and speak with them about your is­sue or is­sues, I got to ques­tion why gov­ern­ment, so far in the hole, is go­ing ahead with these? The con­sul­ta­tions cost money (not sure of the ex­act amount). Money that could be used to spend down on the provin­cial deficit, add 24-hour snow clear­ing back to some ar­eas of this prov­ince, or re­store home care hours to some of our se­niors.

If a per­son truly wants to say what they want in the bud­get they can con­tact their MHA or do like I’m do­ing and email­ing my sug­ges­tions for the bud­get to the email ad­dress that can be found on the gov­ern­ment’s bud­get web­site. That would save money and be as ef­fec­tive as MHAs and min­is­ters go­ing around the prov­ince.

While it’s too late now for this year, gov­ern­ment would be wise to take this ad­vice next year. Gov­ern­ment says it wants to save money — this would a place to start. Tony Ducey writes from French­man’s Cove, NL

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