We would love to hear your comments. Now is the time to let everyone know how important this program is to you and to your community. It may not have been a LOT of funding - but when you take that funding and leverage other funding - it can and will be devastating to lose it.
This week the following press release was issued CAN WEST News Services:
CanWest News Service
Tuesday, February 27, 2007
The government estimates it will spend nearly $231 billion in the coming fiscal year, six per cent more than was initially estimated at the start of this fiscal year. And that doesn’t include any new spending that will be announced by Finance Minister Jim Flaherty in his March 19 budget.
The pre-budget increase in estimated spending includes a 14.1 per cent, or $2.1 billion hike in expenditures to $16.9 billion, by the Department of National Defence to cover a variety of additional military expenditures, such as the expansion of the Armed Forces and operations in
John Williamson, of the Canadian Taxpayers Federation noted despite the Conservative government’s pledge to rein in spending, its expenditures continue to grow faster than the economy, and faster than promised, and will continue to do so.
“The spending estimates do not include the expected increases in spending for equalization, post-secondary education, and the environment,” Williamson said. “So you have some rather large spending envelopes that will be announced March 19 which will add to the already high spending levels we are seeing from the federal government.”
While estimated spending will rise by six per cent from what was estimated a year ago, the increase is only 1.1 per cent higher than what the government now plans to spend this fiscal year, and what it said it would spend in last year’s budget, Treasury Board president Vic Toews said.
However, some departments and agencies, such as National Defence and the RCMP are getting hefty increases. The RCMP will get nearly $291 million or 14 per cent more. And that does not include almost $84 million that will be transferred to the Mounties who will take over the operations of the now defunct Canadian Firearms Centre.
The increase in funding for the RCMP is part of an eight per cent increase to $6.5 billion in spending for security and public safety. Human Resources will get a whopping $1.9 billion in new funding to compensate residents of Indian Residential Schools. Natural Resources is also getting a hefty 50.4 per cent or $719 million increase in spending.
Much of that is for nuclear waste cleanup, and for the government’s “Clean Air Agenda.” Another major spending increase will be for health care, where as a result of a 10-year deal struck with the provinces by the former Liberal government, the Canada Health Care Transfer will rise by $1.2 billion or six per cent to $21.4 billion.
There will be a $151.8 million increase in spending by the Public Health Agency of which the largest amount is to “implement avian and pandemic influenza preparedness measures.” There were also a variety of major percentage increases in spending, including for the Canada Council for the Arts, which will get a 20.5 per cent or $30.9 million increase to help individual artists and art organizations.
But there were losers too. Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. will see spending cut by $280 million, or 12.4 per cent, in part reflecting a reduction in expenditures to provide affordable housing. Industry
CBC, meanwhile, will see its funding cut by $68 million or 6.1 per cent, in large part due to reductions in funding for English and French language radio, television and new media. Some of the other expenditure reductions were among the roughly $1 billion in spending cuts that were announced last fall as a part of the government’s fiscal savings program.
CanWest News Service
When talking about the above cuts with a few folks yesterday - I got the following comments:
- Is the Government doing more for Afghanis than rural Canadians?
- This is disturbing news. Can we not write our local newspapers, radio hotlines and MP’s regarding the serious and unfair impact of proposed cuts to CAP, SchoolNet, support for aboriginal and rural community connectivity and affordable housing? The Tories seem determined to create a permanent underclass of the undereducated poor.
Note: This is a media release relating to main estimates tabled last week (not the budget yet to be released) it is not an official Industry Canada Press Release. The main estimates were prepared last summer based on information on sunsetting programs. We have time to make an impact.