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Thursday, June 9, 2016

June 9, 2016

 

For Immediate Release

 

Opposition Has Done Its Work Advocating for People, Informing Liberals of Budget Impacts

 

Paul Davis, Leader of the Official Opposition, said, “We are proud to have taken on the challenge people gave us to bring their messages of concern about Liberal Budget impacts to the floor of the House of Assembly during the filibuster on two of the Budget’s tax bills.”

 

“We have prolonged this debate because we wanted people’s concerns heard. As we read those notes from people, we could see the Liberal Members struggling with the choice they had to make: to either stand by their Party, or represent the best interests of their constituents by demanding changes to this Budget.

 

“The Budget documents themselves acknowledge that this Budget will have a very negative impact on people and our economy, leaving the province weaker instead of stronger, reducing the population by 20,000 and the number of jobs by 33,000 within five years. That alone should have set off the alarm bells that something was very wrong with the Liberal approach. But somewhere along the way, the Liberals put on blinders and lost focus on people. They stopped listening. The Premier stopped being engaged. He barely even showed up for the filibuster sessions when we were voicing the concerns that people were sending us. And people clearly aren’t happy about that.

 

“We have said all along that action is needed but there are clear alternatives to the approach of this Budget. In our 2015 Budget, we recognized the fiscal challenge, but with a completely different, middle-of-the-road, balanced approach. We brought in tax increases, but they were targeted, with protection for the vulnerable. We brought in spending reductions, but using attrition rather than layoffs, and streamlining services instead of cutting core services. We delayed initiatives so priority areas would not be cut while the Liberals have done the opposite. We demanded that Ottawa step up instead of giving Ottawa a pass. We invested in growing our economy to generate new revenues while the Liberals have delivered no economic stimulus plan whatsoever. Our alternative is on the record, and the bond-rating agencies accepted it.

 

"We are disappointed that the Liberal Members have voted to allow Budget 2016 to pass, but we will continue to keep the government informed of the impacts of these measures on people, and continue to advocate for a better approach.”

 

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Media Contact:

 

Heather MacLean,

 

Director of Communications,

 

Office of the Official Opposition,

 

(709) 729 6105,

 

heathermaclean@gov.nl.ca

 

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