FREDERICTON, N.B.: The Canadian Taxpayers Federation is praising the New Brunswick government for continuing to reduce the province’s debt with another truly balanced budget. The CTF is also applauding the modest tax relief but urging the government to reduce spending.
“The New Brunswick government deserves praise for continuing to reduce the debt in Budget 2020,” said CTF Atlantic Director Paige MacPherson. “Every day the government reduces the debt, the weighty bill for future generations gets a little lighter.”
The net debt is decreasing by $129.3 million. Debt interest payments remain a concern for the CTF and are the sixth largest expense in the government’s budget.
The CTF is cautioning the government against optimistic revenue projections and emphasizing the need for spending reductions now. Expenses are projected to rise every year for the next four years.
“Take off the rose-coloured glasses on revenue projections and cut spending,” said MacPherson. “The government doesn’t have control over its revenues or outside factors that can hit New Brunswick’s economy – many of which we’re seeing in the headlines now.
“The only factor within the government’s control is its spending, and to keep the government’s promises on debt reduction and tax relief, spending needs to go down, not up.”
The CTF is commending the government on reducing property taxes but would like to see the government deliver more substantial tax relief.
“New Brunswickers pay some of the highest taxes in Canada, and while today’s modest tax relief is good, the government should be eliminating the double property tax and dramatically dropping taxes on job creators, to attract investment,” said MacPherson.
The CTF released its 2020-21 New Brunswick Pre-Budget Submission in February. It can be viewed here.