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Anderson to PCs: Control spending & save the Heritage Fund

EDMONTON, AB (January 14, 2013): Today, Wildrose Finance Critic Rob Anderson sent a letter to Associate Minister of Finance Kyle Fawcett detailing the Wildrose Official Opposition’s vision to end wasteful spending and save for future generations through the Heritage Savings Trust Fund.

In the letter to Fawcett, Anderson warned about the danger of dividing up the Heritage Fund and challenged the government to begin a savings plan now to ensure the long-term stability of core social programs and the prosperity of future generations. “The main intention of the Heritage Fund was to ensure the wealth generated currently from Alberta’s non-renewable resources was shared with future generations of Albertans,” Anderson said.  “It is unacceptable for government in this era, when non-renewable resources provide annual revenues between $7 billion and $14 billion, to even consider using the Heritage Fund for current government expenditures and programs.” The letter included the following recommendations for the government to pursue to begin growing the Heritage Fund from its current depleted state:

  • End the practice of spending interest earned from the Heritage Fund until the compounded interest earned on the Heritage Fund is larger than the total amount earned in resource revenues.
  • Put Alberta back on track to balanced budgets and cash surpluses by ending wasteful spending and limit future spending increases at or below the rate of inflation plus population growth.
  • Mandate that a legislated 50% portion of future cash surpluses be put into the Heritage Fund.

“Our province is blessed with non-renewable resources that provide wealth and opportunities that governments of other jurisdictions can only imagine,” Anderson said. “It is our duty now to ensure we deliver on the vision of the Heritage Savings Trust Fund, and to commit to concrete measures to build the Fund so it can grow well into the future.”