The Atlantic Provinces Economic Council thinks the provincial government should do something about its spending, what with declining revenues.
Well, you know.
APEC’s Elizabeth Beale has assessed the dilemma facing the province that she can describe all sides of it.
“It’s so hard because the GDP’s now so linked in to what happens with respect to offshore oil production, it’s such an enormous factor,” she said. “You see these big, volatile jumps, 15 per cent down, contracting, and then the next year back up again, so it’s hard to say what normal is anymore, when everything is so volatile.”
“There have been other calls for the province to set aside a portion of its royalties on an ongoing basis to cover these kinds of variations on a year-to-year basis, or to set up a larger innovation fund,” she said. “The government would argue they’re already doing that. In other words, they’re spending at the current time to diversify the economy and to strengthen the economy over the long run.
People have said it. The government already decided they won’t do it. Laser-sharp insights into the blindingly obvious, or what?
And after a whole bunch of that kind of weaselly wording, we get this:
“[The government] does have choices on that side, and there’s no doubt that there’s reasons why per-capita spending should be higher in a province such as Newfoundland and Labrador, with a large, dispersed population, and it’s very costly to provide services to people,” she added. “But nevertheless, that spending has risen so sharply that there’s got to be some retrenchment from those growth rates, and that’s going to mean cuts.”
No shit, Sherlock.
For a mere $75 you can read more of APEC’s wisdom.
Or you can go out to Lester’s Farm where they’ll let you haul away that sort of cow shite for free.