Statement by Honourable Peter Bevan-Baker, Leader of the Official Opposition, on King government not using available dollars for COVID relief
Premier King’s government was very enthusiastic in taking federal dollars for pavement, but for some reason it is willing to leave millions of dollars on the table for important, critical investment in such things as small business, LTCs, housing, and our post-COVID recovery.
With over 90% of COVID funding coming from the federal government, the primary requirement for provinces was not financial, it was to be well-organised and to coordinate a plan to spend the federal dollars. Premier King clearly failed at this.
For example, it is shocking that his government left dollars for rapid housing on the table when it would have made a huge and immediate impact on our housing crisis. Also, according to the report, in terms of health spending, PEI still hasn’t spent its $4.3 million in federal funds. Why not?
Spending choices reveal government priorities, and this lack of spending in critical areas is a choice of Premier King that begs the question: Is it really about people?
It is deplorable that his government does not yet have a plan to spend federal money on the wicked problems we are facing in PEI, especially at a time when it’s so urgently needed.
Peter Bevan-Baker, MLA New Haven-Rocky Point
Leader of the Official Opposition
Centre for Policy Alternatives – Picking up the Tab