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Surplus projected as part of 2022-2023 provincial budget

A $511 million dollar surplus has been forecast in Alberta, despite no expected or announced jump in tax rates across the province.

Finance Minister Travis Toews tabled the 2022 provincial budget on Thursday, and with it, laid out a rosier picture than was expected even during last year’s fiscal update.

Toews says revenue from the oil and gas sector will see Alberta project a budget surplus for the next three years, which would represent a big jump from the $3.2 billion in deficit initially projected in 2021. Toews says in addition to revenue changes, pumping the brakes on overall spending has also paid dividends.

“Behind every dollar, we save stand our grandchildren, from carrying the burden of a debt they did not incur,” Toews said while speaking to the Legislative Assembly Thursday afternoon.

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Amongst the biggest portfolios in the 2022-2023 budget is healthcare, with the province planning on spending nearly $15.1 billion for Alberta Health Services operations, which is an increase of $476 million year over year. Toews says that includes $750 million in contingency funding to address evolving pandemic-related costs and surgical backlogs and an additional $20 million in mental health care.

When it comes to infrastructure, the province has also earmarked $282 million for clean water and wastewater projects and $722 million for the first year of the Local Government Fiscal Framework, which will replace the Municipal Sustainability Initiative.

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