Saskatchewan budget: Homeowners and drivers winners; civil servants losers - InfoNews

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Saskatchewan budget: Homeowners and drivers winners; civil servants losers

Saskatchewan Finance Minister Donna Harpauer delivers her budget speech while Premier Scott Moe looks on at Saskatchewan's Legislative Building in Regina on Monday, June 15, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Mark Taylor
June 15, 2020 - 1:20 PM

REGINA - The governing Saskatchewan Party tabled its 2020-21 budget for the province Monday. Here's a look at some of the winners and losers:

WINNERS

— New-home owners: The province is introducing a provincial sales tax rebate on new homes. The rebate is good for 42 cent of the tax paid on a new house valued up to $350,000. It applies to homes bought after March 31 and extends to April 2023.

— Drivers: A total of $300 million of the province's $2-billion capital plan is going to highway projects, such as repaving and adding passing lanes.

— Police complaints commission: The province is giving more money to the public complaints commission that investigates complaints made against municipal police. The head of the commission says the money will be used to hire more investigators.

LOSERS

—Public-sector workers: Finance Minister Donna Harpauer says the government will honour its collective agreements, but unions in negotiations aren't likely to see raises as the province tries to deal with the economic fallout of COVID-19. Hiring freezes are also on the table.

—Injection drug users: AIDS Saskatoon had requested about $1 million to open Saskatchewan's first supervised consumption site. It didn't get it.

—Future governments: The bottom line of the budget is a $2.4-billion deficit. Harpauer is characterizing the shortfall as a “pandemic deficit” rather than a structural one. Voters are to head to the polls in October.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published on June 15, 2020

News from © The Canadian Press, 2020
The Canadian Press

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