Budget Leitao 2018: a budget is more than generous

News 27 March, 2018
  • Photo Simon Clark
    The minister of Finance, Carlos Leitao

    Charles Lecavalier

    Tuesday, 27 march 2018, 16:09

    Tuesday, 27 march 2018 21:25

    Look at this article

    Quebec freelance in the accumulated surplus to pay for a generous budget on the eve of the general elections, but the future government will have to tighten the belt as soon as next year.


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    • The “blur” to the nurses
    • Millions $ for a digital transition in schools
    • A new tax credit for the purchase of a first home

    “That is what you mean by election ? By definition, there will be an election in six months. This is what we do, it is to establish a rate of growth of spending that is consistent with the pace of revenue growth “, launched by the minister of Finance Carlos Leitao in a press conference on the sidelines of the deposit of its budget.

    Photo Simon Clark

    “We spend the money we have,” added the president of the treasury Board, Pierre Arcand.

    For its last fiscal year before the October election, Mr. Leitao provides a generous $ 4.6 billion of new spending, a larger increase than the increase of the revenues of the State.

    Bulk : Quebec provides assistance of $ 750 for first-time home buyers. It provides $ 250 million to help taxi drivers to get back to Uber. He announces his intention to hire more nurses, and the education budget will be increased by 5 %, which would employ 4100 people. The plan Leitao also announced a significant reduction in the tax burden on businesses.

    A rain of measures

    Photo Simon Clark

    In transport, major projects targeted were already well-known : electric train of the Caisse de dépôt, extension of the blue line of the Montreal metro, as well as the tramway in Quebec city. The québec infrastructures Plan now exceeds $ 100 billion, a historic first. Boomers who wish to postpone retirement will be entitled to a tax credit for experienced workers enhanced. This is without counting the measures previously communicated in the fall : a check for $ 100 for the school supplies of a child, a single rate per area of the school tax as well as a lower maximum tax of $278.


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    • The government Couillard wants to do away with the unreasonable time-limits within five years
    • A prize pool of $ 1.2 billion for the tramway in Quebec
    • Taxis offset thanks to drivers
    • Quebec taxera Netflix

    Québec welcomes the good performance of the economy. “It is this that allows us to increase expenditure,” said the president of the treasury Board, Pierre Arcand. But this is rather thanks to the ” stabilization reserve “, in which a drain of $ 1.6 billion is made, that Quebec will sign a budget with black ink. The revenue growth does not offset the expenditure galloping.

    The fruits of austerity

    Photo Simon Clark

    This reserve was created in the early years of the liberal mandate. The austere budget 2015-2016 and its spending growth of only 1.1 % showed a surplus of $ 2.2 billion. The following two years have enabled us to add another 3.15 billion $ to the prize pool.

    Photo Simon Clark

    This generosity of the state will cease as early as next year. The government Couillard, if he is re-elected, will restrain new public spending to 2.8 %. He will, in spite of this stroke of the brake, pick another billion $ in the stabilization reserve.

    Photo Simon Clark

    This is what is meant in the critical pq’s Nicolas Marceau that this budget is a “desperate gesture” that keeps Quebec in a situation of deficit, which will plunge into a new round of austerity. The chief caquiste François Legault says his side that it is the “stop-and-go” : you spend less in the beginning of the mandate, and it opens the floodgates to the arrival of the elections. Same goes for Manon Massé of Québec solidaire, who called the method the ” principle of the yoyo “.


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    • A tax holiday for SMES
    • The shortage of labor in the crosshairs of the government
    • More than$ 50 Million for the sharks at the Aquarium du Québec


    Spending greater than the income

    • Income : 109,6 M$
    • Expenses, including the generations Fund : 111,1 M$
    • Increased expenses of the missions of 4.7%
    • Revenue increase of 2.2%
    • To balance the budget, Carlos Leitao freelance 1.6 M$ in the ” reserve of stability “.
    • Lower expenditures after elections
    • The next year, the budget provides for an increase in spending of 2.8%


    The opposition reacts

    “We move from austerity to candy, to austerity. “Nicolas Marceau, spokesperson for the PQ in the area of finance

    “We are left with a budget where the great forgotten, this is the portfolio of families […] Philippe Couillard has preferred the portfolio of the doctors. “– François Legault, leader of CAQ