CALGARY, AB: The Canadian Taxpayers Federation criticized the Alberta government’s 2021 budget for a lack of effort to save money.
“Every business and family have found ways to save money during COVID-19 and the downturn, so why is the only place we can’t seem to find savings the Alberta government?” said Franco Terrazzano, the CTF’s Alberta Director. “We need to see leadership at the top, but instead the Premier’s office is increasing its own budget by $2 million and that’s unacceptable.”
Operating spending (not including COVID-19 spending) is expected to increase by $1 billion in 2021.
The budget for the Executive Council is expected to by $2 million this year.
The Blue Ribbon Panel on Alberta’s finances found that the Alberta government would spend $10 billion less every single year if it brought its per person spending in line with comparable provinces, such as British Columbia, Ontario and Quebec.
The debt is expected to reach $116 billion by the end of the fiscal year. The interest on the debt will cost $2.8 billion, or more than $600 per Albertan.
“I don’t think too many Albertans are laying away at night wishing the Premier’s office would increase its budget by $2 million,” said Terrazzano. “Taxpayers are struggling, and they need to see their tax dollars used more efficiently. The pandemic has increased costs for everyone in some areas, but the rest of us have found other ways to save money. The Alberta government doesn’t seem to have a coherent plan to find savings.”