Budget

March 23, 2004 2 Comments »

What happened with the budget today? I haven’t seen anything of consequence, but I haven’t looked closely.

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2 Comments

  1. Ian H. March 24, 2004 at 5:50 am -

    It’s balanced and there’s $650m for health emergencies (SARS, etc.), but that’s all I know.

  2. Jeremy March 24, 2004 at 7:28 am -

    I thought it was unremarkable, really. It’s balanced, but there are no tax cuts. Of course there are also no tax increases, little increase in spending, and they are going to pay down more debt. That’s about the best part of the whole thing. I see there is also more money for border protection, marginally more money for the military, and an increase in foreign aid. That’s cool.

    Here are the canada.com highlights:

    ? Seventh consecutive balanced budget
    ? Promise to improve accountability
    ? Government to identify $3 billion in annual savings within four years.
    ? Reduce the debt-to-GDP ratio to 25 per cent within 10 years.
    ? $665 million over two years for public health, including $165 million to establish a national public health agency.
    ? $7 billion over 10 years for cities by rebating GST.
    ? $4 billion over 10 years to clean up contaminated sites across Canada.
    ? $1 billion for cash-strapped farmers; about $680 million targeted at cattle producers hurt by the mad cow crisis.
    ? $605 million over five years for intelligence, border protection, marine and cyber-security, threat assessment and emergency response.
    ? $270 million to provide venture capital for start-up technology companies and help get private-sector financing for leading-edge technologies.
    ? $250 million to cover Canadian Forces missions in Afghanistan and efforts to prevent terrorism.
    ? $248 million more for international assistance in 2005-06.
    ? Reduce the air travellers security charge for domestic and international air travel.
    ? Faster spending of $1-billion in funding to cities and towns to repair roads and sewers, including $350 million for Toronto transit.
    ? Reinstatement of $1-billion prudence reserve, on top of the regular $3-billion rainy day fund, to ensure the country’s books stay balanced.
    ? Tax Act changes to allow businesses bigger write offs on computers, heavy machinery and other capital investments.