April 06, 2017
Provincial budget does nothing to reverse damage Liberals caused last year
NDP Leader Earle McCurdy says today’s provincial budget does nothing more than reinforce the “flatter, leaner economy” the Liberal government has created since being elected a year and a half ago.
“Today’s budget speech reveals nothing to entice youth to move here or to stay here. There’s no plan for growth, and no job strategy unless you count the projection of an 18% unemployment rate by 2021,” McCurdy said today.
The budget left almost all of the most harmful measures from last year’s budget in place, the only mitigation being a reduction in gasoline tax.
“They haven’t just slowed the economy with this budget; they’ve put it in reverse,” McCurdy said. “Look at the indicators they provide: housing starts going down, disposable income down, population numbers down – the only thing they see increasing is the number of people out of work.
“The Liberals are showing a remarkable lack of imagination. Worse, they’re showing no signs of learning from past mistakes. Once again, we’re relying on an increase in oil prices to save us.”
Last year’s destructive budget created more than 300 new taxes and fees, including sales taxes on insurance and books, almost all of which remain in this year’s.
“People were expecting worse, so they’re inclined to think of this as good,” he said. “But all that’s happened is we’re waiting for the other shoe to drop. There is a lot still to be revealed. This is probably a politically cagier budget, but I don’t know if that makes it any better.”