OTTAWA – Finance Minister Bill Morneau delivered the federal budget on Wednesday afternoon and it focused on some key areas that are important to Canadians.
The budget for this coming fiscal year still has a deficit of $28.5 billion.
The Liberals have done something no other Canadian government has done in a budget. They say that they will do a gender analysis for the 2018 budget and will look at how many of its measures impact men and women differently.
The government has put $5.2 billion towards skills development. The government plans to allow those out of work to back to school or receive new job training without having to give up employment insurance benefits.
They are also launching a program for those that have already been working to access student loans and grants. The government wants to promote more jobs in science, technology, engineering, and math to young people.
The Liberals have also said they will give $3 billion to support innovation over the next five years. They are looking at six sectors in particular to develop an innovation and skills plan. The following six sectors are: advanced manufacturing, clean technology, the agri-food sector, digital industries, clean resources and health and bio-sciences.
Another main point is that the Liberals say they will give close to $7 billion over the next 10 years to help Canadians access affordable child care while also allowing women to start maternity leave earlier.
There are some changes in the budget that Canadians may not be so thrilled about. Starting in 2018, EI Premiums will go up five cents to $1.68 per $100 of insurable earnings.
They are also taking away the public transit tax credit in order to save money. As of Thursday, tax on alcohol will be raised by 2% as well.
While the Liberals have said they will get back to a balanced budget, they don’t currently have any estimation of when that will become a reality.