Wednesday, May 6, 2015

We are in a Very Different Spot - Finance Minister Wiseman on Budget 2015

Finance Minister Wiseman summed up the Province's 2015 Budget reality succinctly: “We are in a very different spot”.  In a period in which oil is less than half the value than it was a year earlier, “different spot” is may be a bit of an understatement.  Things have changed a lot in a year and the minister and the government is facing some serious challenges. 

Minister Wiseman talk to the Clarenville Chamber of Commerce on Tuesday evening focused exclusively on how and why the government is planning to deal with the downturn – while trying to have a minimal impact on the economy.   In his address he covered the following topics – each of which spoke to the basic principles government has looked at in its crafting the budget:
  •          A Culture of Cost Management
  •    A Refocus our Health System
  •          A Refocus of the College of the North Atlantic
  •          A Focus on long range planning for infrastructure with 5 year planning
  •          A Readjustment of the size of the public Service
  •          Development of Regional Clusters of collaboration for municipalities
  •          A Deficit Reduction Strategy
  •          The Establishment of a Generations Fund
  •     The Government's Fiscal Management Plan
     Minister Wiseman offered two documents to the audience. These are available online at :


  1. Before the banks could approve the $5 billion loan, the province had to buy a $2 billion equity share. Until the project starts to produce power and your electricity rates go up to pay back the bank the government has to pay the interest on that $5 billion at a rate of 11% ( if I remember correctly.) Over the last few years the government has been allocating $500 million, $600 million, $760 million from the budget to Nalcor. Where did you think the money was coming from? Was this a loan for Canadians?

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