NDP kicks off session with focus on budget, big money, and child nutrition

The NDP Opposition Caucus kicked off the spring session by directly challenging the idea that the coming budget will represent a return to “balance” for Saskatchewan. The Sask. Party government has yet to deliver a third-quarter financial report, are using special warrants to hide additional spending in last year’s budget, and have cut $74 million from education. Opposition members also reaffirmed their commitment to get big money out of politics and reverse the addition of PST to construction labour.

“A provincial budget should be much more than a marketing exercise, especially when so many families are struggling,” said NDP Leader Ryan Meili. “This government has taken zero responsibility for how they squandered the good times and then cut services and sold off Crowns during the hard times.”

“How can they speak of ‘balance’ when the Sask. Party has raised taxes, piled on record debt, and cut crucial supports to classrooms?” Meili said. “What are they doing to address the fact that one in four kids in our province are living in poverty and nearly half of those relying on food banks are kids?”

In response to a crowdsourcing campaign seeking to promote public engagement in provincial politics, Meili opened Question Period with a question submitted by a member of the public, which addressed the Sask. Party’s cancelled Film Tax Credit and the significant revenue lost because of this damaging cut.

Meili also called on the Sask. Party to reject the proposed sweetheart deal that would allow one of their largest donors to “print money” in Wascana Park, while other questions addressed declining per-student education funding, child nutrition, and the PST expansion.