Fri. Mar 1st, 2024

Girard sets the table for a postponement of the budgetary balance | Strikes in the public sector in Quebec

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The Minister of Finance, Eric Girard , did not want to commit Thursday to returning to a zero deficit in 2027-2028 as planned in its most recent economic statement.

  • Jérôme Labbé (View profile)Jérôme Labbé

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The combination of the stagnation of the economy and the improvement of government offers to public sector employees will have the effect of widening the deficit, recognized the Minister of Finance, Eric Girard, on the second and last day of the pre-sessional caucus of the Coalition Avenir Québec (CAQ ), Thursday, in Sherbrooke.

Asked in the morning whether he still believed he could return to a balanced budget in 2027-2028, Mr. Girard limited himself to responding that the impact of negotiations with the unions would be disclosed. in the coming months, when the budget for the year 2024-2025 will be tabled.

The minister, however, qualified these impacts as material (c .i.e. meaningful).

The economy is stagnating and putting pressure on revenues, [while] negotiations in the public sector are putting material pressure on spending, [so] it is certain that it will have an impact [ on the deficit], he explained. It's mathematical. At this point, the deficits will be greater.

In this context, will budgetary efforts be required from certain ministries? For the moment, Mr. Girard refuses to publicly consider that the pressures he mentions on government revenues and expenditures will force him to enact some form of cuts.

Strikes in the public sector in Quebec

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Strikes in the public sector in Quebec

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I didn't talk about budgetary efforts: what I'm telling you is that spending will increase in the sectors where there are the most employees, particularly health and education, he specified on Thursday.

The minister also announced Thursday morning that his government will extend the eligibility period to receive the tax-free amounts of $400 or $600 granted in November 2022 to counter the effects of the increase in the cost of living. p>

People who have not yet submitted their income tax return for the year 2021 will have until June 30, 2024 to do so. #x27;send and obtain financial aid. Around 65,000 people are affected. Quebec estimates that this extension will cost $38 million, an amount already provisioned.

More details will follow.

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