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Taxpayers Federation releases budget submission calling for Alberta to bring spending in line with peer provinces

October 23, 2019
Taxpayers Federation releases budget submission calling for Alberta to bring spending in line with peer provinces

EDMONTON, AB: The Canadian Taxpayers Federation released its 2019 pre-budget submission showing how the Alberta government can bring its spending in line with peer provinces.

“Alberta taxpayers are being overcharged by $10 billion every year because previous governments didn’t want to tackle the spending problem,” said Franco Terrazzano, Alberta Director for the CTF. “The government’s number one priority in the upcoming budget needs to be bringing spending in line with our peers.”

The Alberta government would spend $10 billion less every year if it brought its per-person spending in line with Canada’s three largest provinces and there would be no deficit, according to the Blue Ribbon Panel. The Alberta government brought in more revenue per-person last year than British Columbia, even with relatively low non-renewable resource revenue.

The CTF’s pre-budget submission includes spending targets the Alberta government should implement to bring spending in line with other peer provinces, including:

Labour: Reduce spending by $3 billion annually

  • Reduce compensation costs for government employees by $2.1 billion annually, back to 2014 levels
  • Bring spending on doctors in line with Canada’s other large provinces, reducing spending by $903 million annually

Education: Reduce spending by $2.8 billion annually

  • Bring Alberta’s K-12 education spending in line with B.C., saving over $1 billion annually
  • Bring Alberta’s post-secondary spending in line with the averages of B.C., Ontario and Quebec, saving over $1.7 billion annually

Health: Reduce spending by $2.7 billion annually (not including doctor costs)

Infrastructure: Reduce spending by $1.6 billion annually

  • Reduce spending by $1.6 billion annually by bringing the cost of Alberta’s infrastructure in line with the national average
  • Reduce spending on municipal infrastructure grants to bring Alberta in line with the national average, reducing spending by $360 million annually (included within overall infrastructure spending target)

Corporate Welfare: Scrap the $6.8 billion worth of corporate welfare identified in the CTF’s pre-budget submission.

“The Alberta government brought in more revenue per-person last year than B.C., but we still ran a huge deficit,” said Terrazzano. “The Alberta government has been over-indulging for years and now it needs to cut billions of dollars from its budget to bring spending in line with peer provinces.”

The CTF’s pre-budget submission is available here.

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