Alberta opposition says promises of balanced budget being fudged

The Alberta government is under attack by opposition politicians who say a promise of a balanced budget is being fudged, but Premier Alison Redford says nothing’s changed from the government’s perspective.

CALGARY — The Alberta government is under attack by opposition politicians who say a promise of a balanced budget is being fudged, but Premier Alison Redford says nothing’s changed from the government’s perspective.

Associate finance minister Kyle Fawcett said earlier this week that a balanced 2013-2014 budget may not happen, saying it would only be the operating budget, which doesn’t include infrastructure.

Wildrose Leader Danielle Smith says that would constitute a broken promise on the part of the Conservatives, who spoke before the election of plans to balance the budget by limiting spending.

Smith, who also promised to balance the budget during the election campaign, says Redford owes Albertans “an apology for campaigning on such an intentionally deceptive budget.”

Liberal finance critic Kent Hehr says his party has been warning all along that the Tories’ promise was based on shaky financial ground.

But Redford says nothing’s changed and her government is “fully committed to the commitment … made in last year’s budget,” adding she has always said this year’s deficit would be $950 million.

Finance Minister Doug Horner also says the promise of a balanced budget for 2013-2014 will be fulfilled.

“I think everyone knew back when Redford announced this budget back before the election it was essentially a ‘fudge-it budget,’ yet she ran on being able to balance the books,” said Hehr.

“This is not in the cards and it’s an admission by this government that they’re unable to do so. We’ve all seen this dog and pony show before.”

Wildrose finance critic Rob Anderson said it is “utter nonsense” for the Tories to claim a budget is balanced without counting any money spent on infrastructure.

“This is like a family saying they have a balanced budget as long as you don’t include their mortgage and car payments,” he said.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Canada’s basketball community mourns Kobe Bryant after helicopter crash

In his 40 years in basketball, nothing Chuck Swirksy has seen compared… Continue reading

Canadian officials say more coronavirus cases expected but risk ‘remains low’

The first Canadian patient diagnosed with coronavirus began showing signs of illness… Continue reading

Quebec police divers find final sunk snowmobile amid search for missing tourists

ST-HENRI-DE-TAILLON, Que. — Divers with Quebec’s provincial police say they have located… Continue reading

Personal spending a party matter, Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer says

OTTAWA — Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer declined Saturday to shed any light… Continue reading

Human remains found in burned Alberta hotel after ice thaws enough to permit search

WETASKIWIN, Alta. — Police in Alberta say that after a week of… Continue reading

Country music fans enjoy free concert at Red Deer mall, ahead of ACMA awards

Fans like to get up close and personal and that’s exactly what… Continue reading

Your community calendar

Feb. 1 A Jump Rope Competition will be held at the Abbey… Continue reading

Bryant’s 13-year-old daughter killed in crash

A source familiar with the helicopter crash that killed Kobe Bryant says… Continue reading

Ex-NBA star Kobe Bryant dies in helicopter crash

LOS ANGELES — Kobe Bryant, the 18-time NBA All-Star who won five… Continue reading

Canucks, Oilers, Flames primed for mad dash in congested Pacific Division

Matthew Tkachuk doesn’t need to be reminded of the Pacific Division’s razor-thin… Continue reading

Canada’s Drury wins silver and Thompson takes bronze at ski-cross World Cup

IDRE FJALL, Sweden — Toronto’s Kevin Drury won silver in the men’s… Continue reading

Officials track passengers on flight with coronavirus patient

Public health officials were working Sunday to track down some of the… Continue reading

Get coronavirus information from credible sources: public health officials

TORONTO — Even before Canada’s first coronavirus case was announced in Toronto… Continue reading

Deputy prime minister asks Opposition not to delay new NAFTA

OTTAWA — Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland is asking the Opposition parties… Continue reading

Most Read