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News release: Budget 2024 a missed opportunity

Updated: Apr 20

Fredericton, NB - At a time of national instability where Canada is facing serious challenges at home and abroad, the Liberal government delivered an underwhelming budget that continued to see massive growth in government bloat, relied on dangerous levels of deficit financing, and proposed half measures to address serious domestic issues, says Canadian Future Party Interim Leader Dominic Cardy.


“Canada needed a budget that was bold, evidence-based, focused on growth and on measuring results,” said Cardy. “What we actually got was scary, without much sign of bravery or preparation.”


Budget 2024 should have fostered ways to unleash the wealth and idea-generating powers of Canadians in a market economy working together to repair our crumbling infrastructure, said Cardy. Ways to address the climate crisis, to restore Canada’s crippled national defence, and to reform its damaged public institutions.


Instead, Canadians are faced with increases in deficits and debt to the point where all the country’s GST revenue is consumed paying the debt’s interest, with tax increases that will hurt investment/the economy, further complicate the tax system and – incredibly – require even more hiring of public servants, with an underwhelming commitment to defence spending, and with further encroachment on provincial jurisdiction.


In contrast, the CFP is proposing tangible measures to strengthen Canada, including:


·       A comprehensive government program review. The civil service has grown by 111,000 jobs since the Liberals took power in 2015, a 43 per cent increase, and Budget 2024 proposes more hiring. The review will eliminate programs not supported by evidence and strengthen programs that need it. Collecting and spending money is not the same as delivering results, and we need a laser-sharp focus on program design and delivery

·       Appoint a Crown Commission to comprehensively review the tax system

·       Fight climate change using a cap-and-trade system that targets polluters, not citizens. Support the expansion of Canada’s nuclear industry domestically and worldwide. Offer rewards for new ideas and technologies to combat climate change and incorporate net zero technology into plans for new housing starts.

·       Instead of niche programs for special interests, address affordability by removing protections for airlines, grocery stores, telecommunications companies, and other near-monopoly industries that push prices higher and service delivery lower. Supply management has made goods more costly without adequately protecting our farmers, who are also under great pressure which climate change will only worsen. We will review our approaches to the agriculture sector to ensure that consumers and our farmers can benefit from a fair price and our agriculture sector is resilient as a key part of our country's security.

·       Increase defence spending to 2 per cent of GDP within two years, with further increases beyond that in the years following, and implement a badly needed reform of the military procurement system to ensure we have the military we need, when we need it

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“We see opportunities missed,” said Cardy. “Missed opportunities to define Canadian values and how they apply to spending decisions. Spending decisions that should be based on evidence and our Canadian values and that sets aside sterile debates about Left versus Right and asks instead: Do we have the courage to do what’s right and, most important, to do what works?


“That is the conversation Canada needs to be having, and sadly this year’s budget does little to foster that.”


MEDIA INQUIRIES:

Chisholm Pothier

613-325-2555




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