Better late than never?

In a note received just now, an official with the Finance Department explains how much will be saved by changing the age of eligibility for Old Age Security.

By law, the minister of HRSD has to request a new actuarial report whenever the OAS program is modified. That report will quantify the cost of the program with the increased age eligibility and will be released some time after the new OAS eligibility becomes law. However, the Office of the Chief Actuary has provided preliminary estimate that the Government of Canada would spend $97.9 billion in 2030 on OAS, if these changes are implemented. The government would have spent $108.7 billion if the changes were not implemented. To better inform the discussion, and ensure proper focus on the substance of what and why OAS is being changed, the Government has agreed to release this information.

That means savings of $10.8 billion.

The opposition first asked for this projection three weeks ago. Thomas Mulcair asked the Prime Minister to The Finance Minister allowed this week that he’d heard projections of $10 billion and $12 billion, but he then dismissed those as figures he’d heard from the media.

Laura Payton notes that this matches an estimate that a finance official had provided to a CBC reporter, six weeks ago when the budget was released.