Ministry of Finance and Corporate Relations
109 -- 617 Government Street
Victoria, B.C. V8V 1X4
PHONE (604) 387-3347 FAX (604) 356-2822
BUDGET '95 FACT SHEET
Cutting Waste to Keep Government Affordable
Reducing waste in government has been a major factor in controlling spending and eliminating the deficit. In fact, after adjusting for the province's growing population and inflation, the cost of government for the average British Columbian has been cut in each of the past two years. The government will continue to look for ways to cut waste so that British Columbians get the best value for their tax dollars.
Savings from cutting waste this year
More than $100 million in wasteful spending will be cut in 1995/96 to bring down the cost of government, including $90 million by cutting or streamlining administration.
There will be a major new initiative in 1995 to streamline government and cut unnecessary bureaucracy. A blue-ribbon panel of outside experts will undertake a thorough review of management structures and personnel within government.
The panel will include Jill Bodkin, a partner with the firm Ernst & Young and chair of the Vancouver Board of Trade, and Michael Phelps, chair and CEO of Westcoast Energy Inc. and past chair of the Business Council of B.C. The process will be extended in the coming year to Crown corporations and other government agencies and public bodies.
In addition, the following actions will contribute to a reduction in the income assistance budget for 1995/96:
- Streamlining government and cutting the size of the bureaucracy: supervisory positions will be reduced by 450.
- Reducing government-wide advertising by 15 per cent, saving $3.6 million.
- Cutting consulting budgets by 5 per cent, saving $26.5 million.
- Cutting travel costs by 3.5 per cent, saving $2.4 million.
- Cutting spending on information systems and equipment by 3 per cent, saving $9.1 million.
- Cutting furniture budgets by 4.5 per cent, saving $800,000.
- Streamlining Pharmacare administration, saving $37 million.
- Reducing Ministry of Health administration, saving $19 million.
- Cutting administration in Transportation and Highways, saving $12 million.
- Reducing school district and ministry administrative costs by $7 million. There will be no funding for education salary increases.
- Continuing to combat welfare fraud and improve accountability saved $20 million last year and will save more in 1995/96.
- Contracting air services with the private sector saves $2.4 million each year.
- Reviewing MLAs' pension plan.
- Continuing the salary freeze for MLAs and senior public servants, and the five-per-cent pay cut for the premier and cabinet ministers.
- Revamping the student loan program, saving $16 million without hindering access to financial assistance.
- Eliminating duplication of financial management functions, saving $850,000.
- Streamlining policy functions in two ministries, saving $1.45 million.
- Income assistance payments made while recipients are waiting for unemployment insurance are being recovered for an annual saving of over $20 million.
- Enhanced cooperation with other provinces to identify individuals making fraudulent claims in more than one jurisdiction will save $5 million.
Budget '95 (Province of B.C.)
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