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The Sir Robert Bond Papers: Using his words #nlpoli

Politicians are usually very careful about the words they use.That’s why it’s important to notice the words Premier Dwight Ball used this weekend in an interview with Tom Clark for Global’s current affairs show The West Block.Ball said there was … . . . → Read More: The Sir Robert Bond Papers: Using his words #nlpoli

The Sir Robert Bond Papers: Yes. The government has big financial problems #nlpoli

Yet another academic paper emerged on Tuesday that pointed out that the provincial government has a big financial problem caused by following the flawed policy of spending all the money it takes in, plus more besides.

Don’t take that as a dismissal of the paper by University of Calgary professor  Ron Kneebone. To the contrary,  . . . → Read More: The Sir Robert Bond Papers: Yes. The government has big financial problems #nlpoli

The Sir Robert Bond Papers: Better more, and better #nlpoli

The provincial government has a very serious financial problem. 

The forecast deficit for the current year is the second highest on record at $916 million. 

No one knows how big the deficit will be next year,  but with oil prices forecast to stay in their current range for the next couple of years,  . . . → Read More: The Sir Robert Bond Papers: Better more, and better #nlpoli

The Sir Robert Bond Papers: Worry more about next year #nlpoli

Provincial revenue from oil will be $791 million less than forecast in the spring budget, according to the provincial budget update.

A few other expenses are less than forecast and some revenues are up.  All told,  the provincial deficit is now forecast to be almost $1.0 billion.  That compares to the $572 million shortfall predicted . . . → Read More: The Sir Robert Bond Papers: Worry more about next year #nlpoli

The Sir Robert Bond Papers: Welcome to the bottom of the rabbit hole #nlpoli

Putting a freeze on any discretionary spending is the very least that the provincial government could do in light of the dramatic – but entirely predictable – volatility in oil prices that have made the government’s huge budget deficit even larger.

The fact that Premier Paul Davis finally admitted on Thursday that oil prices are . . . → Read More: The Sir Robert Bond Papers: Welcome to the bottom of the rabbit hole #nlpoli

The Sir Robert Bond Papers: Oil and the budget #nlpoli

Lots of people are wondering what the changes to the price of oil will do to the provincial budget.

It will have an impact:  no doubt about that.

But trying to figure out what the provincial budget numbers will look like is a wee bit more complicated.

(Read more…)

The Sir Robert Bond Papers: Political Mummers’ Parade on Monday #nlpoli

Finance minister Tom Marshall will present his mid-year financial update on Monday.  It is supposed to be a way of bringing everyone up to date on how the annual budget is going. It’s an accountability thing.

Since the government’s fiscal year starts in April, the middle of the year was September.  So December is well . . . → Read More: The Sir Robert Bond Papers: Political Mummers’ Parade on Monday #nlpoli

The Sir Robert Bond Papers: Taxing the Imagination #nlpoli

What is it about the provincial Conservatives and income tax?

Kathy Dunderdale rabbited on about it last fall and again in January.

Last week, the provincial Conservatives were at it again, with a private members resolution in the House that praised the government for cutting taxes and for not raising them now that they’ve fallen . . . → Read More: The Sir Robert Bond Papers: Taxing the Imagination #nlpoli

The Sir Robert Bond Papers: Rentierism at the national and sub-national level #nlpoli

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This is the third in a four part series on the current financial crisis the provincial government is facing.  The first instalment – “The origins of rentierism in Newfoundland and Labrador” – appeared on Tuesday and the second – “Other People’s Money”  – appeared on Wednesday.

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A rentier is a . . . → Read More: The Sir Robert Bond Papers: Rentierism at the national and sub-national level #nlpoli

The Sir Robert Bond Papers: Other People’s Money #nlpoli

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This is the second in a four part series that offers an interpretation of the current financial crisis the provincial government is facing.  The first instalment – “The origins of rentierism in Newfoundland and Labrador” – appeared on Tuesday.

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As much as people imagine a great difference between the Confederate and anti-Confederate forces . . . → Read More: The Sir Robert Bond Papers: Other People’s Money #nlpoli

The Sir Robert Bond Papers: The Origins of Rentierism in Newfoundland and Labrador #nlpoli

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Over the next four days, SRBP will offer an interpretation of the political underpinnings of the current financial crisis.  This series goes beyond the immediate to place recent events in both historical and comparative, international perspective. 

The first two instalments briefly describe so9me characteristics of the political system and newfoundland political history before . . . → Read More: The Sir Robert Bond Papers: The Origins of Rentierism in Newfoundland and Labrador #nlpoli

The Sir Robert Bond Papers: Hobson’s Choice #nlpoli

The provincial Conservatives love to spend public money. 

That doesn’t sound very conservative and it isn’t.  Politically, the provincial Conservatives in Newfoundland and Labrador are more like Republicans than the Progressive Conservatives who used to run the province in the 1980s. American Republicans like to cut federal taxes and jack up federal spending and . . . → Read More: The Sir Robert Bond Papers: Hobson’s Choice #nlpoli

The Sir Robert Bond Papers: The Wrong Tool #nlpoli

About two thirds of the people in the province who file tax returns earn less than $35,000 a year before taxes.

It’s the kind of detail that you cannot banish from your mind when you read about the politically popular economist Wade Locke.  The guy who directly and indirectly helped the provincial government create the . . . → Read More: The Sir Robert Bond Papers: The Wrong Tool #nlpoli

The Sir Robert Bond Papers: If the next two years are bad… #nlpoli

No surprise that on the day after natural resources minister Jerome Kennedy talked about looming deficits of pre-1934 proportions that the ruling Conservatives did two things.

First, backbencher Paul Lane reinterpreted Kennedy’s comments on VOCM Open Line with Randy Simms.  There will only be big deficits, says Lane, if we don’t do anything about it.  . . . → Read More: The Sir Robert Bond Papers: If the next two years are bad… #nlpoli

The Sir Robert Bond Papers: Time to Break the Cycle #nlpoli

Jerome Kennedy told reporters on Wednesday that  he and his officials are forecasting that the provincial government will rack up almost $4.0 billion in deficits over the next three years.

That consists of about $725 million this year, followed by two years in which the government will spend $1.6 billion each year than it will . . . → Read More: The Sir Robert Bond Papers: Time to Break the Cycle #nlpoli

The Sir Robert Bond Papers: A Manufactured. Right. Here Mess #nlpoli

The Premier, the finance minister, and their favourite economist are talking about tax increases, layoffs, and spending cuts.

They are talking about cuts and layoffs at a time when the provincial government has more money coming into its accounts than any government in the history of Newfoundland and Labrador before 2003.

The provincial government finances . . . → Read More: The Sir Robert Bond Papers: A Manufactured. Right. Here Mess #nlpoli

The Sir Robert Bond Papers: A Crisis. Or Not. #nlpoli

“Muskrat Falls is a project that will not impact net debt by a single dollar,” finance minister Tom Marshall said in a provincial government news release.

Unfortunately for taxpayers, they won’t pay the net debt.  That’s an accountant’s calculation of what the provincial government owes less any assets they could theoretically sell off if they . . . → Read More: The Sir Robert Bond Papers: A Crisis. Or Not. #nlpoli

The Sir Robert Bond Papers: Not exactly, there, Tom, b’y #nlpoli

As part of the orchestrated campaign to attack the people making the comments instead of the comments themselves , finance minister Tom Marshall trotted out in front of the news media on Friday to lace into a group of five lawyers.

Marshall said comments by five lawyers opposed to Muskrat Falls were “nothing new” and . . . → Read More: The Sir Robert Bond Papers: Not exactly, there, Tom, b’y #nlpoli

The Sir Robert Bond Papers: Reality Check: drops and buckets version #nlpoli

Via labradore, a chart that plots Conservative unsustainable public spending since 2003 with recently announced controls on discretionary spending.

-srbp-

The Sir Robert Bond Papers: The Bow-Wow Parliament lacks bark and bite #nlpoli

In the wake of the latest revelations of financial mismanagement in the provincial government, SRBP has been looking at some of the possible contributing developments over the past decade or more.

Last week, SRBP noted that it appears the provincial government broke up the treasury board secretariat around 2007.  They sent some of its bits . . . → Read More: The Sir Robert Bond Papers: The Bow-Wow Parliament lacks bark and bite #nlpoli