The Canadian Taxpayers Federation (CTF) achieved three policy victories recently in the province of Alberta, when the government announced a new balanced budget law, spending limitation law and surplus distribution plan.
In late February, the provincial government of Danielle Smith released its 2023 budget. The budget included a new balanced budget law that will require the provincial government to pass a balanced budget barring natural disasters and extreme revenue shocks. The law also mandated that 50% of budget surpluses be put towards debt repayment, with the other 50% held for one-time spending that doesn’t increase annual costs, go into a savings account or also be put towards debt repayment. Lastly, the law will limit operational spending growth to the combined inflation and population growth rate.
The CTF has campaigned for all three of these measures for more than a decade. While the budget did not include any tax cuts, these three measures should provide Alberta taxpayers with long-term economic growth and give future governments more options to reduce taxes.