Central Alberta officials are giving thumbs down to the federal budget released Tuesday afternoon.
Earl Dreeshen, Red Deer-Mountain View MP, said the budget does not account for Alberta’s agriculture sector, Central Alberta’s crime concerns or Canadian business competitiveness.
Robin Bobocel, Red Deer and District Chamber of Commerce president, echoed Dreeshen’s thoughts.
Bobocel said the “concerning” budget has no response to United States’ recent tax cuts, which does not give Canadian businesses a cutting edge, that they need to compete in a global market.
The federal government released 2018 “Equality + Growth” budget with an emphasis on the country’s middle class, opioid crisis and gender equality.
Blaine Calkins, Red Deer-Lacombe MP, said there’s no money for the Red Deer Royals.
He had submitted more than 1,000 letters, written by Central Albertans, to the prime minister’s office, requesting funding for the marching show band’s new home at Kinsmen Fieldhouse at St. Joseph’s High School.
“This basically leaves the Red Deer Royals in the same place they were before they had the letter writing campaign which is unfortunate,” said Calkins.
The Royals need to pay about $2.7 million – or half the cost of the field house, while the remaining half will be coming from the Red Deer Catholic Regional School Division. As of October, the band was short about $700,000.
What’s concerning to all three officials is Canada is becoming a deficit ridden country with no plan from the federal government to bounce back.
The 2018 budget projects a $18.1 billion deficit.
Calkins said there’s nothing in the budget “that gives us hope that Canada will ever achieve a balanced budget again.”
He said in the part Liberals promised Canada three “modest” budget deficits of $10 billion, $10 billion and six billion.
“We are about $1,600 more in debt for every man, woman and child in Canada, in just three years of this government,” he said.
Calkins said the budget offers no new funding for criminal justice, nor infrastructure.
The Liberals are spending $109 million dollars to force people to pay their carbon tax but only investing a paltry sum of money in the RCMP to combat crime, he said.
“There’s nothing in the budget that truly helps Albertans,” he said.
Red Deer Mayor Tara Veer will respond to the federal budget Wednesday.