This is the time of year when governments start making choices about what should be in the next budget. These choices reflect the entire scope of Government. In Budget Season, Bill Black of New Start Nova Scotia offers his thoughts on what are the most important issues that need to be addressed in the budget.

The government will need to look at spending wisely on transportation projects, make some tough choices when it comes to health care and tuition funding, and make cuts to the civil service, which they’ve vowed to trim. Black gives the government credit for staying away from the stadium issue, but calls for smarter choices when it comes to spending on economic development and labour policy.

The most important issues to address, Black says, are Nova Scotia’s ageing population and the economic implications of it, and the need to re-evaluate public sector pensions. We are currently a high tax province which discourages investment and interprovincial immigration. According to Black, tax cuts should not be considered until the books are balanced.

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