The shovels may be ready, but the cheques aren’t even in the mail. That’s the verdict from TD Bank chief economist Don Drummond, who told the Hill Times that the very notion that Ottawa could get its fiscal act together quickly enough to push billions of dollars in infrastructure funding out the door within 120 days of the January budget was, to put it succinctly, “a joke.” According to Drummond, who spent two decades at Finance before moving to the private sector, it shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone that the much ballyhooed stimulus money hasn’t yet started to flow. “The only surprising thing is that governments, and the Canadian government was not alone in this, were pretending that somehow this time was going to be different,” he points out. “Particularly where you look at the infrastructure where the bulk of the stimulus was, a bunch of that has to be three-way funded between the provincial and municipal governments, how are you going to do that in one day? It takes time.”
Ottawa's 120-day stimulus timetable "a joke"
TD Chief economist on the government's fiscal roadblocks
FILED UNDER: Canada