The Next Phase of Canada’s Economic Action Plan on Right Track

March 22, 2011
(OTTAWA)  Earl Dreeshen, Member of Parliament for Red Deer is applauding the next phase of Canada’s Economic Action Plan, saying it will have positive benefits for Central Alberta families, seniors and job-creating businesses.

“Canada has weathered the global recession in a stronger position than nearly all major economies, with 480,000 new jobs created since July 2009.  But the global economy is still fragile, we need to stay focused on the economy,” said MP Dreeshen.  “This isn’t the time for an unnecessary election.  We need to stay the course to help create jobs and economic growth.”

Liberal leader Michael Ignatieff has been trying to force an election recently, arguing now is the time to increase taxes on Canadians – starting with a $6 billion tax hike on employers, likely followed by a GST hike and a new ‘carbon tax’ on household energy bills.”  As we try to fully recover from the global recession, massive new Liberal tax hikes would stall Canada’s recovery, kill jobs, and increase the cost of living for families and seniors,” said Dreeshen.

The next phase of our Conservative Government’s Plan keeps taxes low to promote jobs and economic growth, while supporting Alberta families and seniors. It includes:

Supporting Job Creation: keeping taxes low for employers by introducing a temporary Hiring Credit for Small Businesses to support job growth; an expanded work sharing; extending the Mineral Exploration Tax Credit; extending tax relief for investments in new equipment and machinery; investing in innovation to help our agriculture sectors grow; and more.

Strengthening our Families and Communities: up to $5,000 grants for Alberta families to make their homes more energy efficient; up to $840 in new annual financial support for needy Alberta seniors; a new Family Caregivers Tax Credit and a new Children’s Arts Tax Credit; loan forgiveness to attract doctors and nurses to rural Alberta; a new $3,000 volunteer firefighters’ tax credit; and the waiving of license renewal fees for hunters and firearm owners.

Investing in the Economy of Tomorrow: help for Alberta farmers with a new $50 million Agricultural Innovation Initiative; increased support for research and technology; improved federal student loans program for Alberta students; and more.

Preserving Canada’s Fiscal Advantage: eliminating government waste; limiting spending growth; and closing unfair tax loopholes to ensure Canada stays on track for balanced budgets.

Alberta will also benefit from many initiatives including $5 million for the 100th anniversary of the Calgary Stampede in 2012.

The next phase of the Plan also reinforces the Conservative Government’s long- standing rejection of the former Liberal government’s legacy of balancing the federal budget on the backs of Alberta and other provinces through deep transfer cuts to health care and education.

Indeed, under the Conservative Government in 2011-12, Alberta will see record high major federal transfers totalling nearly $3.4 billion – an increase of over $1.1 billion from the former Liberal government.  What’s more, Alberta will see growing transfer support for health care ($2.1 billion – a 29% jump from the Liberals) and social services (nearly $1.3 billion – a 114% jump over the Liberals).  This increased support will help hospitals, schools, and other critical services in the province.

“While the former Liberal government radically and recklessly slashed transfers to our home province, our Conservative Government continues to ensure Alberta has record support to provide the health care, educational and other important services families depend on,” confirmed Dreeshen.