Harper Outlines Balanced Budget, Low-Tax Plan To Protect Canada’s Economy
Today the Department of Finance released its Annual Financial Report for 2014-15. It showed that our Government recorded a fiscal surplus of $1.9 billion last year – one year ahead of schedule.
The budget surplus is a result of higher-than-projected income tax revenues and our Conservative government’s spending discipline. In fact, direct program spending, excluding major transfers to provinces and territories and to individuals, fell for the fifth year in a row.
Our Conservative Government has been focused on lowering taxes and balancing the budget, while increasing direct benefit payments to individual Canadians and increasing transfer payments to the provinces and territories for the services Canadians depend upon, including health care and education. That was our promise to Canadians and we’re delivering.
These results are good for our economy and good for Canadian families. A balanced budget is the foundation for the Harper Government’s economic plan to protect Canada’s economy. It provides the basis for us to lower taxes further and continue affordable, targeted investments that will create new jobs and keep our economy growing, in the context of economic turmoil and instability elsewhere in the world.
Prime Minister Harper’s Conservative government has a strong record of economic and fiscal management. Like Canadian families and small businesses owners, we understand that budgets don’t balance themselves. Keeping our public finances on solid footing involves hard work and discipline. And that’s what we’ve done.
Our Conservative Government ran a temporary deficit in 2009 to help protect and create jobs in the face of the worst global economic recession since the 1930s. But as part of our Economic Action Plan, we also set out a clear, credible plan to return to a balanced budget. And we’ve been focused on that plan ever since.
The results are in:
- The deficit has been steadily reduced from $56 billion at the height of the global economic recession.
- Our debt-to-GDP ratio remains the lowest by far of any G-7 country and among the lowest of the advanced G-20 countries.
- The federal tax burden has fallen to its lowest level in more than 50 years. A typical family is now receiving $6,600 in additional tax relief and enhanced benefits each year under our plan.
- We have made affordable, targeted investments in key economic drivers such as infrastructure, manufacturing, and helping Canadians save and invest.
- Canada has achieved one of the best economic performances among G-7 countries over the recovery. Indeed, real GDP has increased more in Canada than in any other G-7 country since the end of the recession.
- We have created 1.3 million net new jobs since the end of the recession in June 2009 – the majority of which are full-time positions in high-wage, private-sector industries – and we have a plan to create over a million more.
These positive results stem from our low-tax, balanced budget plan to protect Canada’s economy and Canadian jobs in the face of global economic turmoil.
Spending beyond our means, as Justin’s Liberals and Thomas Mulcair’s NDP would have us do, would cause structural, permanent deficits, lead to major tax hikes and program cuts, and burden future generations with heavy debt. We only need to look at the NDP’s record in BC to see the fatal consequences of economic and fiscal mismanagement for BC’s families. In particular, during the 1990s, under the most recent NDP government in BC:
- Provincial spending spiralled out of control, rising by 68 percent.
- Money was wasted on various boondoggles such as the Fast Ferries.
- Resource jobs were systematically and deliberately eliminated, including at Carrier Lumber, and Windy Craggy, requiring massive compensation payouts by the NDP government.
- Billions of dollars were added to the provincial debt.
- Tax rates on families and businesses climbed to the highest levels in the nation.
- Average incomes of middle-class families in B.C. went down.
- More than 50,000 British Columbians were forced to leave the province to seek jobs and opportunity elsewhere.
A national magazine article in November 1998 highlighted the mismanagement of the NDP government, pointing out that taxes on B.C. businesses increased 150 percent since the NDP had first been elected and the average tax bill for a B.C. family increased by over $800 (Maclean’s, November 23, 1998).
Given NDP and Liberal promises to hike taxes and spend money we don’t have, British Columbians and Canadians cannot afford to put the economy in the hands of Justin’s Liberals or Mulcair’s NDP. Only Prime Minister Stephen Harper has a plan to lower taxes, keep Canada’s budget balanced, create new jobs and protect our economy.