GNWT to hear from residents on budget priorities

YELLOWKNIFE (March 10, 2016) – Finance Minister Robert C. McLeod announced today that the Government of the Northwest Territories (GNWT) is seeking public input on the government’s fiscal strategy and budgets for the next two fiscal years.

Residents are being invited to visit the department of Finance website between March 11 to May 20, 2016 to answer a series of questions about their priorities for GNWT programs and services, suggestions on how to use limited financial resources to fund government operations, ideas for improving government efficiency and how to balance infrastructure investment and program and service delivery.

Information gathered during the public engagement will be tabled during the May/June sitting of the Legislative Assembly to help inform debate on the 2016-2017 budget. Public recommendations for specific expenditure reductions and revenue options will be considered for inclusion in the 2017-2018 budget.

Quote

“A weak national and territorial economy means that GNWT revenues will continue to be lower than expected, while our spending continues to grow. Spending more money than we have is not sustainable over the long term and we need to act now to bring government spending into line with revenues. As we prepare to finalize and debate the 2016-2017 budget in the spring, we are asking NWT residents to be part of the solution by telling us about their priorities and suggestions for government spending and revenues.”

  • Robert C. McLeod, Minister of Finance

Quick Facts

  • Development of the GNWT’s annual business plans and budget typically takes several months and includes discussion and formal consultation with Legislative Assembly Standing Committees.
  • Each year, MLAs publicly review and debate the GNWT’s proposed budget in the Legislative Assembly and must vote to approve it before it can be implemented.
  • GNWT spending is currently growing faster than its revenues. To avoid future deficits and an unsustainable debt, the GNWT will need to identify approximately $150 million in expenditure reductions and revenue options over the next five years.
  • The GNWT still expects to spend approximately $1.8 billion on its operations during 2016-2017, injecting substantial amounts of money into the territorial and local economies.

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Media contact

Andrew Livingstone
Senior Cabinet Communications Advisor
Department of Executive
Government of the Northwest Territories
Tel: (867) 767-9000 ext. 11091
E-mail: andrew_livingstone@gov.nt.ca