Budget inflicts more damage on already-weakened economy

NDP House Leader Lorraine Michael

In her budget speech, Newfoundland and Labrador’s finance minister spelled out the harm the budget will cause the province’s economy. Today, in the House of Assembly, the NDP caucus demanded answers from government.

“The provincial budget projects, on Page 5, a 15 per cent reduction in employment and a 22 per cent reduction in real compensation of employees over the next five years. We saw 107 more jobs gone today from Eastern Health, 15 from Central Health,” NDP House Leader Lorraine Michael (MHA, St. John’s East-Quidi Vidi) said during Question Period today.

“In her budget speech, the Minister of Finance admits that deficit reduction measures in the Liberal budget account for 40 to 50 per cent of these serious declines in the economy.

“How could the Premier allow the Finance Minister to proceed with a budget that does so much harm to our economy and to our people?”

Michael also criticized the regressive government surtax. “The Deficit Reduction Levy announced in the Budget requires those with less to contribute a significantly higher percentage of their income than those with higher incomes,” she said.

“How does the premier justify demanding that low and middle income Newfoundlanders and Labradorians bear the brunt of this tax?

“Will the Premier cancel the Deficit Reduction levy and immediately implement the progressive tax review?”

Associated Caucus Members: 

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