No ray of sunshine in Alberta’s fiscal forecast

Rachel Notley seems intent on duplicating the deep-diving debt performance of former Ontario NDP leader Bob Rae

No ray of sunshine in Alberta’s fiscal forecastBy Ben Eisen and Steve Lafleur The Fraser Institute When Rachel Notley’s NDP shook Alberta’s political landscape by winning a majority government in 2015, the similarities to the Ontario’s Bob Rae-led NDP government in the 1990s were striking. Both cases marked the first NDP government in provincial history, and both brought an end to Progressive…

Alberta buys another ticket on the resource revenue roller-coaster

Despite promises to end the reliance on resource royalties, Rachel Notley's government keeps piling up the debt and looking to the same revenue source

Alberta buys another ticket on the resource revenue roller-coasterBy Ben Eisen and Steve Lafleur The Fraser Institute Before forming government, Rachel Notley and the Alberta NDP vowed to get the province “off of the resource revenue roller-coaster.” So it’s ironic that now-Premier Notley’s third budget promises to take the province on yet another ride. Her government’s vague and risky “path to budget balance”…

Alberta crushed beneath a growing mountain of debt

The slow path to balance means the province will continue adding debt by the bucketful for many years, penalizing future taxpayers

Alberta crushed beneath a growing mountain of debtBy Ben Eisen and Steve Lafleur The Fraser Institute The Alberta government’s 2018 budget figures would be shocking if Albertans weren’t already accustomed to such numbers. The operating deficit is expected to be $8.8 billion in 2018-19, down slightly from its peak of $10.8 billion two years ago. It’s difficult to contextualize such a large…

Alberta can learn big lessons from a small First Nation

Run a surplus when times are good. Don’t build up spending commitments that are unsustainable in less prosperous times

Alberta can learn big lessons from a small First NationOne of the greatest Indigenous success stories is the Fort McKay First Nation, in the heart of the oilsands country. It has never produced a drop of oil or earned a dollar in royalties, but it has achieved a standard of living comparable to other Canadian communities by selling services to oilsands companies – janitorial…

How to seed Alberta’s future as a tech giant

It’s time for the provincial government to get involved in tech development by providing venture capital insurance

How to seed Alberta’s future as a tech giantYou hear a lot of talk these days that Alberta needs to “go green” and that technology should be to the 21st century what energy was to the 20th. But if the energy industry is supplanted, how will the Alberta government replace the billions of dollars in resource royalties that flow into its treasury every…

Alberta’s fiscal fiasco threat to future generations of Albertans

Despite an improving economy, the provincial government still projects $9.1-billion deficit

Alberta’s fiscal fiasco threat to future generations of AlbertansBy Steve Lafleur and Ben Eisen The Fraser Institute The Alberta government recently released its third-quarter fiscal update. While the update contains some good news about the economy, the outlook for provincial finances remains dire. The government expects a $9.1-billion deficit this fiscal year and it has no intention of balancing the budget until 2023-24. First, the…

What does the future hold for Calgary’s economy?

The economy is experiencing its most significant transformation since the industrial revolution. It's time for Calgary to get creative

What does the future hold for Calgary’s economy?There's only one certainty in life: change. So the next wave of prosperity in Calgary, Canada's most dynamic city, will probably not be driven by another oil and gas boom. There's an old saying that “nothing fails like success.” This proverb is used to describe a tendency to stick with what we're good at, simply…

Balancing Alberta’s budget by 2023-24 isn’t good enough

Albertans have more debt, continued reliance on volatile natural resource revenue and higher taxes to look forward to

Balancing Alberta’s budget by 2023-24 isn’t good enoughBy Steve Lafleur and Ben Eisen The Fraser Institute The Alberta government’s large and persistent budget deficits remain one of the most important policy problems facing the province. This year, the province expects another deficit of more than $10 billion and forecasts call for a nearly identical deficit next year. The government of Premier Rachel Notley is…

Pipe dreams: Taking pipeline obstructionism to a whole new level

B.C.’s government seems intent on crippling the Canadian economy and tearing apart inter-provincial relations

Pipe dreams: Taking pipeline obstructionism to a whole new levelThe B.C. government has thrown yet another wrench in the gears of the Canadian provincial comity with a declaration that it will create a new regulatory process for pipeline approval and restrict how much bitumen can be moved through pipelines into the province. The government, led by Premier John Horgan, also announced it will create…

Trudeau fiddles while Canada burns

Canada is becoming a balkanized union of mini-fiefdoms at the mercy of Big Environment and narrow provincial interests

Trudeau fiddles while Canada burnsJustin Trudeau needs to get his priories straight. He's supposed to be the prime minister of Canada, not just another Instagram-friendly international celebrity. Burning issues on the home front need urgent federal attention and a sound hand on the tiller. But Trudeau chooses this moment to fly tens of thousands of kilometres across the world…
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