PEI Government presented a pre-election budget

CHARLOTTETOWN – The Canadian Union of Public Employees Prince Edward Island (CUPE PEI) is concerned that more than one million dollars are going into professional and contract services in staffing and human resources planning in the Public Services Commission.

“At the same time, there is a reduction of more than $350,000 in salary in the Public Service Commission. This is an indication of the Government’s intention to contract out more public service jobs in this province. Last year, the Government spent $120 million in professional and contract services”, said Donalda MacDonald, President of CUPE PEI.

“While we fully support more investments in the Health and Education sectors, we are concerned that the Government choose to decrease its revenues by reducing taxes especially to the corporations. We will be losing close to $2.2 million from corporation taxes this year alone. The Government’s goal to have the lowest tax rate for small businesses in Canada is simply going to deprive Islanders from millions in revenues”, added MacDonald.

“Education will get an increase of $16.6 million, which will include some funding for educational assistants; youth service workers and money for badly needed new buses. We believe this is a small step in the right direction”, said MacDonald.

“The Health Department will get the largest budget increase with more than $30 million. We hope this money will help reduce the waiting time for hospital procedures, which is a concern for our members and all Islanders.

“While the reduction in the provincial tax on gas and diesel fuel is welcome, it is not a significant reduction. This is clearly a pre-election budget. The Government seems to be trying to please everyone with this budget,” concluded MacDonald.

CUPE represents more than 2,300 members on PEI.