CTF calls for Al­berta gov’t to cut spend­ing

Prairie Post (West Edition) - - Prairies -

The Cana­dian Tax­pay­ers Fed­er­a­tion (CTF) called on the Al­berta gov­ern­ment to cut spend­ing, in light of its se­cond quar­ter fis­cal and eco­nomic up­date.

“The Al­berta gov­ern­ment des­per­ately needs to get its fis­cal house in or­der,” said Franco Ter­raz­zano, Al­berta Di­rec­tor with the CTF on Nov. 30. “Over­spend­ing is what got the gov­ern­ment into its fis­cal mess and cut­ting spend­ing is what’s needed to get the gov­ern­ment out of this mess.”

The Al­berta gov­ern­ment’s se­cond quar­ter fis­cal up­date fore­casts a 2018 bud­get deficit of $7.5 bil­lion, with the spend­ing fore­cast in­creas­ing by $436 mil­lion com­pared to the orig­i­nal bud­get.

The Al­berta gov­ern­ment's debt is cur­rently in­creas­ing by over $1 mil­lion every hour, with the av­er­age Al­ber­tan owing over $11,000 in pro­vin­cial gov­ern­ment debt alone.

The Al­berta gov­ern­ment’s 2018 bud­get re­lies on long term op­ti­mistic as­sump­tions to bal­ance the books by 2023:

• Eco­nomic growth that is higher than pri­vate sec­tor fore­casts every year through­out the years 2018-21 (see page 117);

• 174 per cent in­crease in non-re­new­able re­source rev­enue (see page 86);

• Hous­ing starts that are higher than pri­vate sec­tor fore­casts (see page 120);

• An un­em­ploy­ment rate that is lower than pri­vate sec­tor fore­casts in all but one year (see page 119).

“Un­like many house­holds and busi­nesses that have had to tighten their belts dur­ing the down­turn, the gov­ern­ment seems un­will­ing to cut its own spend­ing and is in­stead spend­ing more,” con­tin­ued Ter­raz­zano. “The Al­berta gov­ern­ment is hop­ing for a boom to bal­ance the books.”

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