Budget 2014February 21, 2014
On February 11, 2014, Minister Flaherty introduced Budget 2014. The federal government announced a significant economic accomplishment: The federal budget will be balanced in 12 months. Even more impressively, the budget will be balanced while keeping federal taxes low and protecting the programs and services Canadians count on.
The government expects the deficit to decline to $2.9 billion in 2014-15 and projects a surplus of over $6 billion in 2015-16. Meanwhile, federal transfers to individuals providing important income support, such as Old Age Security and Employment Insurance, and major transfers to other levels of government, including those for social programs, health care and infrastructure, continue to grow.
Budget 2014 builds on the federal government’s strong record of job creation and economic growth. Since the global recession ended in 2009, Canada has achieved the best job creation record of any G-7 country, the strongest income growth and one of the best economic performances in the G-7. Over one million new jobs have been created in Canada since the recession ended in 2009, most of them full-time and most in the private sector. The fact that the unemployment rate in Halton Region stood at 4.0% in September 2013 and 5.5% in Wellington in December 2013 is proof that the plan is working.
Promoting job creation and economic growth will continue to be a focus. Budget 2014 introduces a new Canada Apprentice Loan to help registered apprentices with interest-free loans for training and creates thousands of new paid internships for young Canadians entering the job market. It also doubles the amount of money available to invest in the automotive sector to $1 billion through the Automotive Innovation Fund, which will benefit Chrysler in Brampton, Ford in Oakville, Toyota in Cambridge and Honda in Alliston, as well as numerous car part suppliers like Linamar in Guelph and Jefferson in Elora.
Budget 2014 also keeps federal taxes low. Since coming into office in 2006, the federal government has repeatedly lowered taxes for Canadians. In fact, the government has cut taxes over 160 times since 2006, reducing the overall federal tax burden to its lowest level in nearly 50 years. Personal taxes, consumption taxes, business taxes, excise taxes all have been cut. The GST was cut from 7 to 5 per cent, putting nearly $1,000 back in the pocket of an average family. The small business tax rate was cut from 12 to 11 per cent and the general business tax rate was lowered to 15 per cent, creating the lowest tax rate on new business investment in the G-7. As a result, over 1 million low-income families, individuals and seniors have been removed from the tax rolls altogether. A typical Canadian family of four is paying $3,100 less in federal taxes in 2014 than they were in 2005.
Budget 2014 demonstrates that the federal government’s plans are working: Returning to balanced budgets and keeping federal taxes low, while protecting the programs and services Canadians count on.