Today, Finance Minister Caroline Wawzonek presented the 2023-24 Budget, the final budget of the 19th Legislative Assembly.
Budget 2023-24 prioritizes initiatives already set in motion to ensure their sustainability and successful transition into the next Assembly. Improvements to the capital budgeting process, strengthened debt management policies and a projected operating surplus of $178 million will allow the Assembly to end in better financial shape than it began.
Budget 2023-24 projects a $178 million operating surplus after adjustments with revenue of $2.5 billion and expenditures of $2.2 billion. Revenue is projected to increase 2.9 per cent from the 2022‑23 Revised Estimates due mainly to an increase in the Territorial Formula Financing Grant.
Budget 2023-24 does not contain any new taxes; however, property mill rates and some fees will be indexed to inflation and territorial tax legislation introduced in October 2022 will increase carbon tax rates on April 1, 2023. If the territorial legislation does not pass, a federal carbon tax will take effect April 1, 2023. Aviation fuel and diesel fuel used to generate electricity for community distribution remain exempt from carbon tax.
“This final Budget of the 19th Assembly continues to build on our Mandate priorities, and I am confident we are leaving the next Assembly with a fiscally sustainable foundation on which to build. In addition to structural governance changes are the choices we made for investments in communities, health care, health care workers, early childhood, skills training and in support of economic growth. Our legacy is derived from this change and will provide returns for the benefit of the people of the Northwest Territories.”
- Caroline Wawzonek, Minister of Finance
- Budget 2023-24 proposes $187 million of increased spending from the last budget, offset by $37 million in savings and sunsetting programs. Increased spending includes:
- $82 million in new spending for mandate priorities and enhancements to existing programs,
- $62 million in one‑time spending to cover expenses for floods in 2022,
- $21 million to address higher demand or higher costs for current programming,
- $19 million to reflect work done on behalf of others under accounting changes and $3 million in amortization.
- Total debt is projected to be $1.5 billion by March 31, 2024, well below the federally-imposed borrowing limit.
For media requests, please contact:
Manager, Public Affairs and Communications
Department of Finance
Government of the Northwest Territories