Newfoundland and Labrador to get $32 million boost from Ottawa: Foote

Published on March 21, 2016
Judy Foote.
Canadian Press photo

The Newfoundland and Labrador government is getting a bit of help from Ottawa to deal with the $2-billion deficit forecast for the coming year.

Judy Foote, the province’s federal representative in cabinet, announced Monday that the federal government will be kicking in $32 million from the “Stabilization Fund.”

The pot of money is available to provinces that see resource revenue fall by more than 50 per cent, or non-resource revenue fall by five per cent year over year.

Both Newfoundland and Labrador and Alberta are getting the maximum amount of money available, which works out to $60 per person.

Because of a larger population, Alberta got about $250 million from the fund, which has been around since the 1960s.

The province got about the same amount of money back in 1992 amid the economic wreckage of the cod moratorium.

The announcement comes one day ahead of the federal budget, which will be delivered on Tuesday afternoon.

Foote said the government in Ottawa wants to be part of the solution to the province’s budget woes.

“We do know and we recognize that Newfoundland more than any other province at this point in time, is in a very difficult situation. It has very little ability to raise funds,” she said.

“Certainly, in terms of whatever they decide to do themselves in their budget, I have no idea, I’ll leave that to the province, but from the federal government’s perspective, we need to work with the province and we’re doing that.”