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Manitoba ends year with $580-million deficit

Staff writer ▼ | October 9, 2013
Manitoba's NDP government posted a $580-million deficit in the last fiscal year, $120 million more than it initially predicted, according to the final numbers for 2012-2013.
Stan Struthers
Stan StruthersManitoba's NDP government posted a $580-million deficit in the last fiscal year, $120 million more than it initially predicted, according to the final numbers for 2012-2013.


Despite the extra red ink, Finance Minister Stan Struthers said he can still eliminate the deficit by 2016-17, a deadline that has already been pushed back once.

The public accounts report shows the government took in slightly less money from taxes and fees than expected, and slightly more than expected from federal transfer payments.

Overall spending was about two per cent higher than budgeted. Struthers said there were a number of key programs that required more money. The deficit came in a year when the government expanded the provincial sales tax to cover many kinds of insurance and personal services such as tattoos and manicures. The tobacco tax was increased, and the tax on gasoline jumped by 2.5 cents per litre.

By last fall, the government admitted the deficit was going to be much larger than anticipated. It pushed back its election campaign promise to balance the budget by 2015 to 2017.


 

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