Alberta government has few options for reducing costs: report

Any cuts must be made judiciously, taking into account the fact that services must be maintained at certain levels, says U of C report author

Alberta government has few options for reducing costs: reportShort of imposing a sales tax, and hampered by low energy revenues, the Alberta government has few options for reducing expenditures and making a dent in it’s $8.8-billion deficit, says a new report by the University of Calgary’s School of Public Policy. “The most obvious area for the new government to cut would therefore be…

Treating taxpayers’ money with respect

We should be watching the case of B.C. clerk of the legislature Craig James and sergeant-at-arms Gary Lenz very carefully

Treating taxpayers’ money with respectAs the old song says, “money makes the world go round” – at least on the level of material possessions. And money falls into two categories: ours and other people’s. Of course, we’re free to do whatever we wish with our money. We can spend it extravagantly. Or we can take care of it, spending…

Canada’s public sector is getting fatter, and that’s bad news

Instead of climbing out of debt, federal and provincial governments are spending more, to the detriment of the economy

Canada’s public sector is getting fatter, and that’s bad newsRecent employment data from Statistics Canada shows a troubling trend. In July, the ratio of private sector to public sector employees (excluding the self-employed) dipped to lows that – except for the period of massive ‘stimulus’ spending by the federal and provincial governments in 2009-10 – have not been seen since Canada’s fiscal crisis of…

Make room for religious diversity in the workplace

Banning Quebec frontline civil servants from wearing religious symbols would show obstinate and dangerous secularism

Banning Quebec frontline civil servants from wearing religious symbols, as premier-designate François Legault intends to do, would be socially regressive. Imposing this kind of flinty and obstinate secularism squashes the very diversity most politicians claim to value and support. It’s also out of step with the growing awareness among the business community that religious diversity…

Mental health therapies should be fully funded by medicare

Publicly funding comprehensive treatment for depression is cost-effective

Mental health therapies should be fully funded by medicareHeadlines tell us in detail about the mental health struggles of Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain before their deaths by suicide. But what too often goes untold are the stories of thousands of people who die by suicide every year in Canada – our friends, relatives, colleagues and neighbours. What’s also not well documented is…

Alberta’s job recovery brings its own set of problems

Instead of a recovering private sector economy, Alberta has simply expanded its government sector

Alberta’s job recovery brings its own set of problemsBy Charles Lammam and Brennan Sorge The Fraser Institute Premier Rachel Notley’s government has repeatedly pointed to total employ­ment figures as a sign that Alberta has recovered from the recent recession. For instance, the premier recently said “our economy is recovering … and created 90,000 new jobs last year.” But to better understand the state…

Powerful government unions weaken the economy

While the U.S. is curtailing the strength of such unions, Canadian government finances are stretched by the cost of public-sector workers

Powerful government unions weaken the economyAmerican taxpayers and workers won a big victory recently, with the United States Supreme Court ruling 5-4 in Janus versus American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) that government employees not part of a union could not be forced to pay union dues. Previously, government employees in 22 states were forced to pay…

How to remedy poor health outcomes created by poverty

Social assistance programs in Canada are falling behind. It's time we expanded basic coverage to include drug and dental care

How to remedy poor health outcomes created by povertyBy Arjumand Siddiqi and Odmaa Sod-Erdene EvidenceNetwork.ca Public health researchers have long known that poverty and poor health are linked, but new evidence suggests that social assistance – the government system designed to provide those in poverty with income support – is not succeeding at protecting health.  Using data from national government surveys, we studied the…

Academic results another reason to support school choice

In British Columbia, independent schools outperform public schools in academic achievement

Academic results another reason to support school choiceFor some students, the end of the school year means saying goodbye to one school and hello to another, so it’s an opportune moment for parents to reflect on school choice. In British Columbia, independent schools – operating outside the public system – provide the bulk of educational choice. There are many benefits to the…

EDC’s lack of cash threatens taxpayers

The Crown corporation could be worth up to $30 billion if divested. But it could be worthless if it can’t realize its assets as cash

EDC’s lack of cash threatens taxpayersBy Ian Madsen and Alexandra Burnett Frontier Centre for Public Policy Export Development Canada (EDC) is unable to convert its reported profits into cash, posing an increasing risk to Canadian taxpayers. And it has been funding ventures that are normally considered too risky for commercial banks to handle. EDC is a federal Crown corporation that…
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