Alberta budget update shows deficit unchanged despite $1 billion in extra revenue
- Alberta’s debt is now over $33 billion
- Income and business tax revenues down despite tax hikes
CALGARY, AB: The Canadian Taxpayers Federation (CTF) is calling on the Alberta government to seriously rein in spending after today’s year-end report shows the deficit is the same despite the government bringing in $1 billion in additional revenue.
“This budget update confirms loud and clear that Alberta’s NDP government has a spending problem, not a revenue problem, and these politicians need to get it under control,” said CTF Alberta Director Paige MacPherson. “Shifting the blame for their massive deficits is getting old, and it’s not saving Albertans a dime.”
The Alberta government’s deficit is still a weighty $10.8 billion, despite revenues being up $1 billion from the budget. Resource revenues increased $1.7 billion and investment income increased $1.6 billion above budget projections.
“Finance Minister Joe Ceci has refused to give Albertans any clear plan as to how they will balance the budget,” MacPherson said. “This isn’t Minister Ceci’s money, it’s Albertans’ money, and it’s being sent to the banks to pay billions in debt interest payments. It’s time for Minister Ceci to show us a plan.”
fAccording to the update, the province is now over $33 billion in debt. In May, S & P downgraded Alberta’s credit rating by two notches, and predicted Alberta’s debt would hit $94 billion by the end of the 2020 fiscal year.
While revenues increased overall, income tax revenues are down $700 million and business tax revenues are down $600 million below government projections.
“It’s another piece of evidence that raising taxes doesn’t automatically mean more revenue for the government,” said MacPherson. “The taps are running dry.”
The CTF has provided the Alberta government with advice as to how they can balance the budget. Our 2017-18 pre-budget submission can be found here: https://www.taxpayer.com/media/2017-18-CTF-AB-Pre-Budget-Submission.pdf
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The CTF is Canada's leading non-partisan citizens' advocacy group fighting for lower taxes, less waste and accountable government. Founded in 1990, the CTF has more than 117,000 supporters and seven offices across Canada. The CTF is funded by free-will, non tax-receiptable contributions.