The Canadian Taxpayers Federation is the government of Newfoundland and Labrador to adopt resolutions to start the new year on the right foot.
“Many Canadians see this time of year as a turning point to do better and commit to New Year’s resolutions,” said CTF Interim Atlantic Director Renaud Brossard. “That’s exactly what we’re asking from governments – to do better – by adopting these resolutions.”
1 – Scrap plans for $25/day child care
The government of Newfoundland and Labrador unveiled plans to bring in $25-per-day child care in 2021. This is projected to cost $12 million per year.
However, the government of Newfoundland and Labrador is facing significant economic challenges and expects to collect $100 million less in personal income tax revenue than what it will pay in interest on its $16.4 billion debt. The government is currently projecting a $1.8 billion deficit.
“The government is not truly helping young Newfoundlanders and Labradorians if it is mortgaging their future,” said Brossard. “The government should scrap its plans for expensive new programs and focus instead on a responsible financial plan.”
2 – Put forward a plan to balance the budget
Eight of the last 10 budgets in Newfoundland and Labrador have been written in red ink.
“Deficit spending has been a chronic problem for the province, even before the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Brossard. “The current deficit and the province’s debt are not sustainable, and the government needs to put forward a solid plan to get its books back in order.”
3 – Cut bureaucrats’ pay to help make the budget sustainable
Salaries and benefits for government employees have consistently been the province’s largest single expense. They are projected to cost $3.6 billion for 2021-22. Government employee compensation costs will take up 80 per cent of Newfoundland and Labrador’s total own-source revenue of $4.5 billion.
“It’s not possible to make Newfoundland and Labrador’s budget viable without reducing its largest source of expenditures: bureaucrats’ compensation,” said Brossard. “If we’re really all in this together, bureaucrats need to show they can make the financial sacrifices Newfoundlanders and Labradorians have had to make this year.”