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  • Writer's pictureStaff Writers

Province Releases Budget 2021 #nlpoli

Today the provincial budget was released. Finance Minister Siobhan Coady delivered the budget speech in the House of Assembly at 2:00 pm.

The budget set out a direction to modernize and transform government, improve service delivery, and address financial concerns.

Concern was mounting since Moya Greene released her report earlier this month suggesting big cuts are needed to bring down the deficit.

Here are the highlights:

  • The deficit last year was 1.64 billion. The projected deficit is $826 million.

  • Nalcor will be restructured. Other Crown Corporations will be reevaluated.

  • The English School District will be eliminated and merged into the Department of Education.

  • Increase of 3 cents per cigarette and 6 cents per gram of fine-cut tobacco.

  • Increase 20 cents a litre tax on sugar-sweetened beverages.

Fiscal Overview

  • The projected deficit for 2021-22 is $826 million, an improvement of $1 billion from Budget 2020.

  • Revenues projected for 2021-22 are $8.5 billion.

  • Expenses projected are $9.3 billion.

  • The projected borrowing requirement for 2021-22 is $1.7 billion.

  • The net debt is now anticipated to reach $17.2 billion in 2021-22.

  • Current oil price projections have improved to $US64 per barrel, while the Canada-United States exchange rate is forecast at 79.6 cents.

  • Investments

  • $30 million for a Tourism and Hospitality Support Program to alleviate pressures experienced by COVID-19.

  • $20 million for small business and community organization assistance to help with increased costs and losses as a result of the pandemic.

  • Close to $600 million for infrastructure projects to help improve access to services and create more jobs for people in this province.

  • $27 million to support economic development initiatives including research and development, commercialization, regional development and business growth activities such as investment in the technology sector.

  • $25 million over the next three years to improve connectivity through cellular and broadband.

  • $10 million for the Film and Television Equity Investment Program.

  • An additional $2.5 million for mineral geoscience data collection and interpretation.

  • $5 million for Arts NL.

We will have more coverage of the budget throughout the day.


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