In the 2014 budget, the government forecast that the deficit would be eliminated in 2015-16 and this would be followed by modest surpluses over the next three years. The Harper government had already promised to use the surpluses to allow income splitting for tax purposes for families with children under the age of 18; to extend the fitness tax credit to adults; and, to reduce debt by $3 billion a year. These three initiatives alone, if adopted, would use up most of the surpluses over the medium term.Read More
For the first eleven months of fiscal year 2013-14, the federal government posted a deficit of $5.4 billion, an improvement of $5.3 billion from the deficit of $10.7 billion reported in the same period in 2012-13. The surplus in February 2014 was about $2 billion higher than that recorded in February 2013. The financial results for December 2013 to February 2014 represent virtually all of the improvement in the deficit year-to-date.Read More
Last June, we wrote an article (“Mr. Flaherty’s Blank Cheques” iPolitics June 18, 2013), which supported Senator Wilfred Moore’s private member’s Bill S-217. This proposed Act would amend the Financial Administration Act to once again require parliamentary approval for any new borrowing by the federal government in financial markets.
Ask anyone who has had the “dubious pleasure” of sitting through a budget lockup, federal or provincial, how easy it is to read and understand the financial documents that governments’ provide. They will just roll their eyes in frustration. It seems to most readers that the sole purpose of budget documents is to create confusion so that they just throw up their hands in defeat.Read More
Last Friday, the Government tabled another “large”(359 pages) Omnibus Budget bill, which had little to do with the 2014 Budget. No one was surprised because this has been the practice of this Government since it was elected in 2006. What matters for the Conservative government is the amount of legislation that gets passed, not the “quality” of the legislation. The most recent example of this, among a long list of bad legislation, is the so-called Fair Election Act.Read More