For Immediate Release
Ottawa – John Nater, Member of Parliament for Perth—Wellington is disappointed by the Federal Budget introduced by the Minister of Finance earlier this afternoon.
“Families, seniors, students, small business owners, and young people entering the workforce continue to struggle under the federal tax burden.” said M.P. Nater shortly after the House of Commons adjourned.
For the third year in a row, the Federal Budget has largely ignored farmers, farm families and rural communities. In fact, there was not a single mention of the agriculture industry in the Minister’s Budget Speech.
Also failing to receive significant mention by the Finance Minister was the important issue of infrastructure. “Throughout my pre-budget consultations, municipalities and community leaders reinforced the critical need for investments in local infrastructure. However, this budget fails to deliver. In fact, $2.2 Billion in infrastructure funding has been delayed past 2019 and an additional $2.4 Billion in infrastructure funding has been delayed past 2023,” said M.P. Nater. He added: “In 2015, the Liberal Party committed to small deficits of $10 Billion annually to pay for infrastructure investments. But we now see the government blowing past those deficit targets while at the same time delaying the infrastructure investments for which those deficits were promised.”
“Throughout Perth—Wellington, local municipalities have identified key infrastructure priorities that may go unfunded due to these delays. These projects include roads, bridges, recreation facilities, and water and wastewater projects. These infrastructure needs are critical to the ability of our local municipalities to serve our citizens,” said M.P. Nater.
The previous two budgets broke the Liberal campaign promise to limit deficits to $10 Billion and to balance the Budget in 2019. Budget 2018 again breaks that promise by adding $78.6 Billion in new debt over the next 5 years.
Based on the new debt added by the Liberal Government, Canadian taxpayers will be paying an additional $8.7 Billion annually in interest and debt charges. “This is $8.7 Billion that will not help farmers and farm families. This is $8.7 Billion that will not be invested in local communities to build important infrastructure. This is $8.7 Billion that will not help expand broadband internet to communities that need it,” said M.P. Nater “Billions are going into the coffers of wealthy financial institutions; not into the pockets of hard-working Canadians”.
While the Budget notes the government’s efforts to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), Budget 2018 does not lay out a meaningful plan or framework for how the government will adjust to a modified or eliminated trade agreement with our largest trading partner. “The Government previously stated they have a plan in place should negotiations fail. However, it appears no resources have been allocated for that plan. I am concerned about the jobs in Perth—Wellington that are dependent on exports to the United States and Mexico; unfortunately it appears the Liberals are not.”
Nater concluded by saying “My priority will always be the hard-working families and citizens of Perth—Wellington. Although this budget was a disappointment I will continue to advocate for the needs and interests of our communities.”