Includes Plan to Help Seniors With Education Property Taxes
Premier Brad Wall today released the Saskatchewan Party’s complete, fully-costed 2016 election platform – the Saskatchewan Party’s plan to keep Saskatchewan strong.
Wall said the platform includes very little new spending and will see the province return to balanced budgets by 2017-18.
“Most importantly, the Saskatchewan Party plan will keep our economy strong,” Wall said. “So voters have a clear choice. We can continue to move forward with a strong economy that will keep attracting new investment and creating new jobs or we can go back to the way it was under the NDP, when so many people and jobs were leaving our province.
“I believe Saskatchewan voters will choose to keep Saskatchewan strong.”
The platform includes new initiatives Wall has announced over the past two weeks, such as:
- The Highways 2020 Plan to repair more Saskatchewan highways;
- Canada’s first patent box tax incentive plan to promote commercialization of innovation in Saskatchewan;
- The Graduate Retention Plan First Home Program to help graduates to purchase a first home; and
- Individualized funding for young children with Autism Spectrum Disorder;
The platform also includes a new measure to help make life more affordable for seniors. Starting in 2017, seniors with household income below $70,000 will be able to defer all or part of their education property taxes. Those taxes would not have to be repaid until the property is transferred or sold.
“Most seniors want to remain in their own home as long as possible and this is one step we can take to help them do that,” Wall said.
Wall also outlined the Saskatchewan Party’s plan to rebuild the province’s rainy day fund and pay down debt.
A Saskatchewan Party government will use oil revenues gained by the province to build a $500 million balance in the province’s rainy day fund – the Growth and Financial Security Fund – when the price of oil exceeds a threshold of $75 U.S per barrel (WTI). Once the fund has achieved a $500 million balance, oil revenues received by the province above the $75 U.S. per barrel (WTI) threshold will be dedicated to debt repayment.
Wall said once the government’s operational debt has been paid off, excess oil revenues will be used to create a new Saskatchewan Futures Fund. The Saskatchewan Party government has reduced the operational debt by $2.7 billion or 40 per cent since 2007, saving taxpayers about $1.2 billion in interest costs.
The total cost of the Saskatchewan Party platform in terms of new spending commitments is $105.4 million over four years.
In the coming days, a summary of the Saskatchewan Party platform will be mailed to every household in Saskatchewan. The complete platform is now available on the Saskatchewan Party website: www.saskparty.com/our_plan.
For further information: Kathy Young, (306) 359-1638 or 1-800-966-9611, [email protected]