BC Liberal Finance co-critics Shirley Bond and Tracy Redies say that Finance Minister Carole James has presented another tax-and-spend budget that has no plan for economic growth.
“This is a spending budget that relies on taxation revenue and a one-time $1.6 billion transfer from the federal government,” said Bond. “There is absolutely no focus in the budget to grow the economy or measures that support well-paying, family-supporting jobs. Furthermore, it’s irresponsible for this government to continue to make promises when taxpayers could well be on the hook for the costs. Clearly the NDP plan is all about tax and spend with zero regard for growing the economy.”
Despite raising taxes on individuals, homeowners, and businesses to the tune of $5.5 billion since July 2017, the NDP government is projecting only a narrow surplus of $274 million for the coming fiscal year.
“I am deeply concerned this budget leaves B.C. vulnerable in an uncertain global economy,” said Redies. “The minister has forecasted razor-thin budget surpluses over the next three years. This seriously calls into question how the minister can actually balance the budget in the face of an unforeseen downturn in the economy or even another unpredictable and devastating wildfire season.”
Furthermore, the NDP’s 2019 budget fails to appropriately tackle the growing affordability crisis in the province.
The BC Chamber of Commerce states that business confidence has hit a low with only 46 per cent of businesses believing this government supports them – a significant drop from the 78 per cent mark two years ago.