The following electronic version is for
informational purposes only.
The printed version remains the official version.
BUDGET 97: HIGHLIGHTS
Ministry of Finance and Corporate Relations
Province of British Columbia
||Ministry of Finance and Corporate Relations
Honourable Andrew Petter, Minister
Protecting Health Care
Jobs Strategy for B.C.
A jobs strategy will support the creation of 40,000 new jobs this year,
building on the best job creation record in Canada. The strategy includes:
- Investing $1 billion in schools, hospitals and transportation infrastructure
to create more than 13,000 jobs.
- 12,000 new jobs for young people through a $23-million Guarantee for Youth
- Creating a new agency to promote tourism in partnership with the tourism
- Promoting airline industry competitiveness, attracting new carriers and jobs
by a phased-in reduction to the international jet fuel tax rate.
- Encouraging small business job creation by continuing the income tax cut
and the income tax holiday for eligible new small businesses -- reducing costs
by $29 million.
- Working with B.C.'s film industry to expand opportunities and encourage
- Developing Fisheries Renewal BC to reinvest profits, protect the fish
resource and protect jobs.
- Replacing welfare with training for young people through the $20-million
YouthWorks initiative, which will help 40,000 youth this year.
Protecting Health Care and Education
- Health care is protected with an increase of more than $300 million to fund
hospitals, physician services and to reduce surgery wait lists.
- Education is protected with a $63 million increase in the K-12 school
- $300 million to build and improve public schools.
- 2,900 new spaces for students at universities and colleges.
- Tuition freeze is maintained to help B.C. students.
Tax Cuts and Rate Freezes for B.C. Families
Working British Columbians get help to make ends meet.
- Provincial income tax rate will be reduced another two per cent this
year, building on the two-per-cent cut last year -- more than $142 million
annually for B.C. families.
- The BC Family Bonus will provide $235 million in support for more than
200,000 lower- and modest-income families.
- ICBC premiums, BC Hydro rates and post-secondary tuition fees remain
- Tax cuts and rate freezes mean the average B.C. family saves up to $700.
A Financial Management Plan
Spending drops for the first time since 1958
B.C.'s finances on a sound footing for the future
The budget includes a financial management plan to:
- Reduce this year's deficit to the smallest this decade.
- Balance the budget in 1998/99 and achieve a surplus in 1999/2000.
- Set capital spending at $1.1 billion annually for the next three years.
- Cut B.C.'s debt ratio to 20 per cent of GDP in three years and reduce it to
15 per cent by 2015, as recommended by a private sector advisory group.
- Keep B.C.'s debt servicing costs, now at 8 cents of every revenue dollar,
among the lowest in Canada.
BC Ministry of Finance and Corporate Relations
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