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  • Report looks at captured nature of BC’s Oil and Gas Commission August 6, 2019
    From an early stage, BC’s Oil and Gas Commission bore the hallmarks of a captured regulator. The very industry that the Commission was formed to regulate had a significant hand in its creation and, too often, the interests of the industry it regulates take precedence over the public interest. This report looks at the evolution […]
    Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
  • Correcting the Record July 26, 2019
    Earlier this week Kris Sims and Franco Terrazzano of the Canadian Taxpayers Federation wrote an opinion piece that was published in the Calgary Sun, Edmonton Sun, Winnipeg Sun, Ottawa Sun and Toronto Sun. The opinion piece makes several false claims and connections regarding the Corporate Mapping Project (CMP), which we would like to correct. The […]
    Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
  • Rental Wage in Canada July 18, 2019
    Our new report maps rental affordability in neighbourhoods across Canada by calculating the “rental wage,” which is the hourly wage needed to afford an average apartment without spending more than 30% of one’s earnings.  Across all of Canada, the average wage needed to afford a two-bedroom apartment is $22.40/h, or $20.20/h for an average one […]
    Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
  • Towards Justice: Tackling Indigenous Child Poverty in Canada July 9, 2019
    CCPA senior economist David Macdonald co-authored a new report, Towards Justice: Tackling Indigenous Child Poverty in Canada­—released by Upstream Institute in partnership with the Assembly of First Nations (AFN) and the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA)—tracks child poverty rates using Census 2006, the 2011 National Household Survey and Census 2016. The report is available for […]
    Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
  • Fossil-Power Top 50 launched July 3, 2019
    What do Suncor, Encana, the Royal Bank of Canada, the Fraser Institute and 46 other companies and organizations have in common? They are among the entities that make up the most influential fossil fuel industry players in Canada. Today, the Corporate Mapping Project (CMP) is drawing attention to these powerful corporations and organizations with the […]
    Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
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Budget 2009: You Read It Here First

Marc Lee predicted a deficit a year ago (in a paper that graciously acknowledged comments from Toby and me.) Our blog was also ahead of the curve on some other aspects of Budget 2009.

I flagged the Equalization cuts the morning after the November 2008 Economic Statement, when they received little attention. These cuts have since become a Budget hot potato because of reaction from Quebec and Newfoundland.

Last week, I raised the probability of Ignatieff putting forward amendments rather than fully accepting or rejecting the Budget. (Given that his amendment is procedural rather than substantive, he has essentially just accepted the Budget. However, my post was correct regarding his choice of political tactics.)

UPDATE (Jan. 30): The Halifax Chronicle Herald is giving us some credit:

With Ontario now collecting modest equalization, the new ceiling for payments would have been British Columbia’s capacity. Mr. Flaherty clearly thought this too generous, so the clawback trigger has been lowered. It’s now the average capacity of the receiving provinces, after counting both equalization and all resource revenues (half of which are excluded when determining who gets equalization).

Muddled? Erin Weir, a young Saskatchewan economist and former NDP candidate, summarizes the impact of Cap 2 in a perceptive online column for the Progressive Economics Forum: It limits the equalization entitlements of resource-rich provinces with below-average personal incomes. So it’s no wonder Newfoundland Premier Danny Williams feels targeted again. Sometimes paranoids do have enemies.

The two caps will save Ottawa $5.3 billion this year and next. Arguably, a large chunk of the budget’s $12-billion infrastructure program is perversely rerouted from equalization.

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