Tuesday, February 17, 2009

It's the economy, stupid

The province is hinting that the 2009-2010 provincial budget will be balanced. This would be the 10th consecutive balanced budget by the NDP government (note that the books aren't closed yet on number 9).

This is quite an accomplishment especially if you consider that during those 10 years we’ve seen floods, a federal accounting error, 9/11, BSE, drought, forest fires and now one of the biggest economic downturns in history.

Through it all the NDP has been able to balance the books and put money away in the rainy day fund for times just like these. The Tories and sky-is-falling naysayers (I’m looking at you non-economist John McCallum) will continue to repeat their negative mantra but they will be proven wrong once again as they have been for the last 10 years.


  1. We've also seen unprecedented increases in transfer and equalization payments.

  2. Doer's done a good job of balancing the budget, but his job has been made a lot easier by record transfer and equalization payments. There has never been an easier time, economically speaking, to rule Manitoba. If Ottawa starts slashing transfers, like in the 1990s, look out, NDP. I'm sure Doer will retire so he doesn't have to personally slash the budget.

  3. Equalization as a percentage of total provincial revenue has been fairly constant for many years now. Doer hasn't relied any more on equalization than Filmon did during certain years in the nineties. Manitoba's greatest dependence on federal transfers was in 1991/92. Ontario, Alberta and B.C. have received the highest increase in federal transfers in terms of percentage of all Canadian provinces since 1999.

  4. The budget is not really balanced, more like creative accounting.