Taxpayers federation says gov't spending problem needs to be addressed on eve of budget
FREDERICTON - It was ticking like a time bomb on the front steps of the legislature.
As the David Alward government readies to release its first budget today, the Canadian Taxpayers Federation launched the Maritime leg of its national debt clock tour in Fredericton, with the message that New Brunswick needs to take action on the growing debt or risk going bankrupt.
New Brunswick's total debt stands at $8.35 billion and the current budget deficit is $820 million.
The New Brunswick debt is increasing by $2.3 million per day and almost $95,000 per hour.
The clock illustrates just how fast the debt in New Brunswick is climbing.
It was ticking yesterday at more than $9.1 billion.
"People are surprised at how high the debt is and how quickly it climbs," said Kevin Lacey, the federation's Atlantic director. "I think the numbers are so staggering and I think there was a surprise here in New Brunswick about how large the deficit was and what the problems are that the province has to deal with.
"When they see their money contributing to this debt it's worrying and they are really starting to demand balanced budgets, reform and they want to see this clock stopped."
The oversized aluminum ticker pulled by a truck interchanges the federal debt load - now at more than $563 billion - and the debt of each province it travels through, both in a per second increase in the public debt and per person figure.
The coast-to-coast tour left the west coast last month bringing with it a simple message: cut spending, balance the budget and stop this clock.Moncton Times & Trancript