The budget at a glance
IQALUIT – Here are some highlights of the GNWT’s 1998/99 budget:
* The size of the government’s surplus at the end of the fiscal year 1996-97 was larger than forecast, standing at $12 million. The GNWT predicts the same for 1997-98.
* Estimated surplus for 1998-99: $2.4 million.
* The budget forecasts total government revenues of $1.163 billion in 1998-99.
* A tax break for northerners who invest in NWT businesses, either directly or through labor-sponsored mutual funds or employee-sponsored venture-capital funds: eligible investors, individuals or corporations will recieve credits against their payable NWT income tax equal to up to 30 per cent of their investment.
* Over the period from 1998 to 2004, the cost of the NWT Tax Credit Program is estimated at $23.5 million.
* $40-$50 million has been earmarked for programs to help eligible NWT residents move out of social housing and into their own homes over the next two years.
* The GNWT plans to embrace new public-private partnerships, dubbed P-3s, as a means of accelerating sorely needed infrastrucure development without increasing annual spending levels.
* Effective July 1, 1998, the GNWT will begin supplementing the federal Child-Tax benefit to the tune of $2 million a year through the NWT Child Benefit Program.
* The government estimates the program will affect the lives of 60 per cent of children living in the North.