BUDGET 2018 A MISSED OPPORTUNITY FOR SOUTH OKANAGAN — WEST KOOTENAY

OTTAWA – For people living in South-Okanagan – West Kootenay who are working hard and struggling to make ends meet, Budget 2018 marks another missed opportunity to act. While the proposed budget does contain some measures and ideas that are welcomed, many are half-measures that have no money attached that do not alleviate the problems they are proposed to take care of.                   

“In this budget, the Liberals had an opportunity to build an economy where everyone benefits, not just the few at the top.” said NDP MP Richard Cannings (South Okanagan – West Kootenay). “The government continues to tell Canadians the economy is strong, but most people are not feeling the benefits. While I welcome the new funding some initiatives such as university research and for the protection of land and water, I cannot overlook some of the important initiatives that are missing.”

 

According to Cannings the budget fell short on many measures including:

•    There is not enough funding to address the mental health crisis across Canada.

•    There are no concrete measures to prevent bankrupt companies from paying their shareholders and creditors before paying workers’ benefits and pensions

•    Instead of immediately introducing a pharmacare program, the Liberals chose to launch yet another study

•    While there is lip service to rural broadband, it is unclear as to how much funding will be available to local groups to develop broadband service delivery

Too many people believe the economy is not working for them. What they see instead is an uneven playing field where only the few at the top can benefit, at the expense of everyone else. Unfortunately this budget does not go far enough to change this everyday reality for people.   

“Budgets are all about making choices.With this budget the Liberals have chosen to continue giving huge tax breaks to rich CEOs and corporations, while asking everyday Canadians to wait their turn and have faith that the government will keep their promises ” added Cannings. “A budget of half measures for projects that won’t be delivered for years shows that the government doesn’t quite get it yet. I look forward to working with my colleagues to suggest improvements to this budget and try to make these half-measures whole solutions.”