What the budget does for the Alberta oil patch

Complaint that it looks like a Liberal budget swiftly gives way to sifting through it for goodies

The mood overall today in the west is strangely muted. Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall bemoaned the coming years of deficit. “Here we have hard-wired into the budget, five years of it,” he told reporters yesterday. “In the long term, fiscal probity, balanced budgets, lower taxes (and) a competitive business environment is still our best hope for lasting growth.” The Regina Leader-Post’s Murray Mandryk began his column saying, “Finally, the
Conservatives have decided to get along with the Liberals by . . . er . . . doing exactly what Liberals like Stephane Dion would have done.” The budget prompted the Calgary Herald’s Deborah Yedlin, who is not a tree hugger, to
ask, “Where was the commitment to transportation infrastructure that would improve commuting within cities and between cities?” Eighty per cent of greenhouse has emissions, she notes, are generated by consumers, and the budget seeks to reduce none of that. And Don Braid, also of the Herald, outlined how the oil patch will benefit: “Ottawa will establish what’s essentially a $200-billion pool to provide ‘liquidity and financing’ to Canadian business,” he writes. “Energy firms consume more capital and credit than any other Canadian business. Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers vice-president Greg Stringham thinks the federal move will not only free domestic credit for the industry, but draw international money back into Canada.”

Calgary Herald