Ministry of Finance
and Corporate Relations

Budget 96

Jobs Up
Taxes Down
Debt Reduced
Budget Balanced

Message from Premier Glen Clark

On May 28, the people of B.C. gave my government a renewed mandate. And they sent us some very clear messages -- messages that we intend to act on.

People have told me they want to see health care and education protected. They want us to continue to invest in young people and jobs. This budget delivers on all counts.

And it helps out B.C. families and small business with income tax cuts, a tax freeze until the year 2000, and freezes in BC Hydro rates, tuition fees and ICBC car insurance rates.

British Columbians have also told me they want us to cut the cost of government and reduce government debt. We're listening.

In our first term, we tackled British Columbia's $2.4-billion deficit. Now we take on the challenge of reducing B.C.'s provincial debt.

You deserve a government that listens to you and acts on your priorities. Delivering that government is my commitment to you as premier.

Message from Finance Minister Andrew Petter

I am pleased to introduce my first budget to the people of British Columbia. It is a budget that builds on the financial strength of B.C. -- having the best credit rating and lowest debt per capita of any province -- with further measures to improve services while cutting costs. It does this through a leaner, but not meaner, approach that provides a greater commitment to protect health care and education than any other government in the country.

And it is a budget that responds to the concerns raised by British Columbians to act on government debt with a moratorium on capital spending and a comprehensive program review.

The 1996 budget strikes a balance between service delivery and solid financial management. And it responds to the concerns raised by British Columbians during the election campaign.

Cutting the Size and Cost of Government

Actions to cut the size and cost of government spending and debt include:

Budget Balanced

Cutting Income Taxes for B.C. Families

Taxes Frozen To The Year 2000

Hydro Rates, ICBC Fees Frozen

Cutting Taxes for Small Business

To support job creation by small businesses, the sector of the economy that creates the most jobs:

Government Debt Drops

Canada's Best Record of Job Creation

A number of new initiatives announced in recent months will mean thousands of new jobs for working men and women. This includes:

Making Our Communities Safer

This budget provides funding to keep our communities and streets safe. New initiatives include:

Guarantee for Youth

A Guarantee for Youth provides B.C.'s young people with the education, skills, training, and job opportunities they need through:

The government has also introduced Youth Works -- a BC Benefits initiative that will provide training and work experience this year for more than 20,000 young people on welfare.

Protecting Health Care and Education

The B.C. government is making the strongest commitment of any provincial government to ensure that health care and education are protected.

Action taken includes:

Budget '96 (Province of B.C.)

BC Ministry of Finance and Corporate Relations

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