The provincial government has tabled its spring budget, with a predicted surplus of $2.4 billion. More than $3 billion dollars will be pumped into the healthcare system in 2023, a number, according to Finance Minister Travis Toews, is a 4.1 per cent from 2022, with the money going towards helping decreasing emergency room wait times and reducing wait time for surgeries.
The budget also confirmed the fuel tax relief program will continue on until June 30th, scrapping the 13 cent tax per litre on gasoline. After June 30th, the tax rates will hinge on average West Texas Intermediate prices.
Also included in the budget is a 2 per cent cap on tuition for post secondary education, with it going into effect for the 2024-2025 school year, in addition to a reducing Alberta Student Loan interest rates to prime rates.
Toews says they will also continue to drive towards driving down provincial debt, saying Alberta paid down $13.4 billion in provincial debt in 2022-23, with another $1.4 billion expected to be used in 2023-24 to further cut taxpayer-supported debt, which is forecast to be $78.3 in 2023-2024. The province says total revenue over the next fiscal year is expected to come in around $70.7 billion, $5.4 billion lower than the forecast for 2022-23.