Conservative Party of Canada response to Question 9

Question:  How will your party’s economic policies keep Calgarians working?

Question:  What are your party’s policies regarding the energy sector? Do you support the construction of pipelines to connect Alberta’s oil and gas to markets in other parts of Canada and for export overseas?

Question:  Does your party support the development and adoption of a National Transportation Strategy?

Question:  How will you diversify Calgary and Alberta’s economy?

Question:  Good decisions are based on good data. What is your party’s position on the long-form census?

Answer:  We have a proven record and a plan for the future that is based on low taxes, balanced budgets and a clear focus on helping our fragile economy grow and thrive in the midst of global economic turmoil. This stands in stark contrast to the other parties, who are pushing a high-tax, high-debt agenda that will only hurt our economy.

A re-elected Conservative Government will balance the budget every year for the next four years. And we will do so while keeping taxes low, increasing transfers to the provinces and territories for health care and education, and making affordable investments to protect the economy and help Canadian families.

Our Government promised Canadians that we would keep taxes low and balance the federal budget. We are proud to have done exactly this. In the wake of one of the largest economic and financial crises of the past century, we initiated a plan to return to balanced budgets as the economy recovered. In keeping with commitments made at the beginning of the economic recovery, our Government’s plan to return to balanced budgets has focused on controlling operating expenses by federal departments rather than raising taxes that are harmful to job creation and economic growth or reducing transfers to individuals and other levels of government for social programs and health care.

Our plan is working. The federal Department of Finance recently confirmed that our Conservative government had a $1.9 billion surplus in the 2014-15 fiscal year, one year earlier than originally planned. We are currently running a $5.2 billion surplus in the 2015-16 fiscal year, confirming that our responsible fiscal plan is on track. We have accomplished this while cutting taxes on families and job-creating businesses, and increasing transfers from the federal government to individuals, provinces and territories.

Our Conservative government has a proven record of enhancing Canada’s economic infrastructure, promoting economic diversification in places like Alberta, and ensuring job-creating businesses can invest in creating new jobs and opportunities for Canadian families. EI payroll taxes have stayed low under our Government, and will drop by another 21 per cent in 2017. We have reduced the general business tax rate from 22 per cent to 15 per cent. We have cut the small business tax rate from 12 per cent to 11 per cent, and are cutting it further to 9 per cent over the next four years. What is more, Canadian manufacturers and processors will see tax relief when they invest in new equipment and new facilities, which create new jobs.

We have created a more vibrant venture capital environment so that new companies can launch and thrive in Calgary and elsewhere. But we have also ensured that our existing industries can continue to grow, including the resource sector that has fuelled Alberta’s economy for decades. We have ensured that every resource project undergoes a rigorous, science-based review to ensure it is safe for Canadians and safe for the environment.

Prime Minister Harper is focused on practical, serious solutions to help grow the economy, while his opponents hold up untested, dangerous approaches that will harm Canada’s economy.

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