“I’m disappointed to see that the government has done nothing to reduce spending on the operations side, despite a projected deficit that has now risen to $10.9 billion for the 2016-17 fiscal year,” said Interim Leader and Finance Critic, Ric McIver. “It’s evident that the NDP has no intention of being responsible stewards of taxpayer dollars and will forge ahead with their reckless agenda, no matter what it ends up costing Albertans.”
Through the first three months of this fiscal year, the overall budget deficit has increased by $527 million and while the majority of this can be attributed to the Wood Buffalo wildfires, operational spending forecasts have increased by $122 million. The majority of this increase can be found in Health, which makes Minister Hoffman’s rejection of a proposal from AHS that could see up to $200 million in savings on laundry services all the more disturbing.
“The Progressive Conservative caucus has repeatedly called on the NDP to find internal efficiencies and has even provided some suggestions on where to look,” said McIver. “The government has rejected several opportunities to realize significant savings without impacting front line services. This should tell Albertans everything they need to know about the NDP’s commitment to spending their money wisely.”
“In just 15 months, this government has dug a fiscal hole so deep, it will take us generations to climb out. I think it’s safe to say that any hope we once had in this government’s ability to respond to our economic and fiscal reality responsibly has now been lost.”