Saskatchewan’s economy is getting stronger.
New employment numbers show that 14,200 new jobs were created in the province over the past year, and there were 18,000 more full-time jobs.
This spring’s provincial budget is the right balance for our strengthening economy. It increases supports for Saskatchewan people while managing spending to maintain economic growth and provide the services Saskatchewan people expect.
The 2019 Saskatchewan Budget fulfills our government’s three-year plan to balance the budget with no new taxes or tax increases while boosting supports for mental health, classrooms and highway safety. It includes:
• A sustainable plan to ensure a balanced budget this year and for the years to come;
• Nearly $30 million more for targeted mental health and addictions funding;
• An increase of $26 million in operating funding for Saskatchewan school divisions;
• New tax credits for volunteer firefighters and first responders;
• Funding to begin a five-year Enhanced Intersection Safety Program for highway intersections; and
• A focus on infrastructure with funding for preconstruction design of a new Victoria Hospital for Prince Albert, planning for a new Weyburn hospital and continued funding for school consolidation projects in Weyburn and Rosthern.
During the spring sitting, our government passed multiple pieces of legislation, including:
• Changes to The Saskatchewan Employment Act creating a new critically ill adult leave, expanding parental leave and adding an additional week of maternity leave;
• Passing Clare’s Law which will allow police to release information about someone’s violent or abusive past to intimate partners whose safety may be at risk;
• Increasing the number of occupational diseases firefighters and volunteer firefighters are covered for through changes to The Workers’ Compensation Act;
• Legislation to allow rural municipalities, and other municipalities with populations under 500, to join regional police services;
• Legislation that better balances the rights of rural land owners and members of the public in accessing rural property; and
• Creating a paid job leave option for survivors of interpersonal and sexual violence to take up to five paid days and five unpaid days off to seek supports or services.
The spring sitting of the legislature saw your Saskatchewan Party government continue to stand up for Saskatchewan in the fight against the federal government’s carbon tax and push for help for canola farmers facing trade barriers with China.
In the coming months, we will keep Saskatchewan issues front and centre here at home and in Ottawa.
Your Saskatchewan Party government will keep standing up for Saskatchewan and will keep our economy strong. We will advocate for our industries that provide the means to keep Saskatchewan strong – and we will continue our opposition to the Trudeau Carbon Tax, which includes taking our fight all the way to the Supreme Court of Canada.
Now that the Spring Sitting of the Legislature is complete, I look forward to hearing from you – your thoughts, suggestions and feedback in terms of how we can best represent you and build on the growth of our community and province today and in the years ahead.