December 1, 2023

The Queens County Citizen

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QLP Financial Framework | 41 billion promises, huge deficit

QLP Financial Framework |  41 billion promises, huge deficit

(Montreal) To fulfill his promises of 41 billion over five years, Dominique Anglade increased the deficit instead of reducing government spending. It makes the rich and the banks pay.

Posted at 11:05 am
Updated at 4:23 pm.

Tommy Chouinard

Tommy Chouinard

It’s “definitely not” a spending spree, the Liberal leader argued when he unveiled his fiscal framework on Sunday after a week of campaigning. According to her, it is a “fair and responsible economic framework” aimed at responding to the inflationary crisis and labor shortages.

Its promises total $41 billion over five years (more than $8 billion a year, eventually, in 2026-2027). The most expensive are tax cuts (12 billion over five years) and Seniors’ Allowance (10 billion over five years).

A Liberal government would seek $12 billion in additional revenue by 2026-2027. That led the Liberals to say the net cost of their commitments was $29 billion.

For example, Dominic Anglede would raise taxes on the rich who earn more than $300,000 ($1.4 billion over five years). It imposes a new tax on financial institutions, ie banks and insurance companies (1.7 billion over five years). “We are sending a fair message. […] Quebec’s middle class is doing more than its share and needs more support. Even those who have more means can do their best,” said Anglade, notably with her candidate and former director at Scotiabank, Frédéric Beauchemin.

The PLQ is also betting that it will recover around 6 billion in five years in the fight against tax havens (3.4 billion) and undeclared work (2 billion). Under the Liberals, Montreal will have a tax on vacant buildings (1 billion over five years) and another on digital giants GAFAM (900 million over five years).

To build its fiscal framework, the party left intact the revenue growth projections contained in the pre-election report on public finances presented on August 15 by the Legault government. And there was no question of adopting austerity policies like the Coulard government at the beginning of the mandate: Dominic Anglede did not cut spending growth. She adds to it with her promises. There is no action plan to review government expenditure.

“We have no intention of cutting services, on the contrary,” insisted the liberal leader, flanked by former Finance Minister Carlos Leitao. Although he did not run again, he contributed to the development of the economic framework.

Annual deficits average $5 billion a year after payments to the intergenerational fund. 6.7 billion in the fifth year. “We’re talking about a non-exaggerating amount,” pleaded Dominique Anglade. This is almost three times the deficit mentioned in the pre-election report for the next few years. Liberals try to keep the weight of annual deficits in perspective by insisting they represent 1% of gross domestic product (GDP).

Unlike the Liberal Party coalition Avenir Quebec, which plans annual payments to the Generations Fund, which is used to reduce debt.

A return to a balanced budget would be postponed by seven years, but the Legault government would deliver within five years under its latest budget. The Liberal five-year fiscal framework is silent on the measures to be taken to bridge the fiscal deficit.

Under the Liberals, net debt is projected to increase by 5 billion, reaching 211 billion in 2027. But the weight of debt relative to GDP continues to decline. In five years we will reach from 38.0% to 33.2%. A Liberal government would continue to aim to reach the Canadian average of 32%.

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For chief caquist François Legault, the liberals have “disqualified” themselves with this deficit fiscal framework. “The Liberals consolidated Quebec. I saw their economic framework and I couldn’t believe my eyes. […] This is completely irresponsible. It is not [le] A Liberal party that is tough on public finances,” said Mr Legault.

The PLQ was the first political formation to present its economic framework. After this discovery, Dominique Anglade showered the crowd at the Laval Family Day in 2018 trying to keep the five constituencies (out of six) won by her party.

With Hugo Pilon-Larose, Press

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