Casual commentary about political, cultural and economic issues with a particular interest on the city of Winnipeg by John Dobbin
Friday, January 1, 2010
I'm sure they announced it so that many people would not notice it just before Christmas but Manitoba's deficit is now around $600 million.
It is going to increasingly hard to ignore deficit numbers in the new year because they are not going to disappear unless the economy turns around and there is a serious increase in revenue. What is likely to add some salt to the wound is the possibility that the Feds will decrease transfer payments to help end their own deficits.
Rosann Wowchuk in her new job as head of Manitoba's finances will have to either consider cuts or a tax to help stem the shortfall.
It is possible that Greg Selinger might try and call and election to nip this all in the bud. He is probably not looking forward to delivering a budget that either increases the present deficit or that comes with new taxes or cuts. If at all possibly, the NDP government might try and obscure how bad things are, deliver a good news budget and then call a snap a election.
It is an idea that even the Harper Tories might consider for themselves.