Mr. Silver: I have a question for the Minister of Finance. Many signed Yukon First Nation governments have tax-sharing agreements with the Yukon government. It allows them to collect income tax from people who live on First Nation settlement land. In some cases, it is a substantial amount of money. When the Government of Yukon changes income tax rates, as it does in this budget, it has a direct impact on First Nation governments’ revenue. If any level of government did something that was going to impact my bottom line, I would expect to be consulted about it before it happened.
Can the minister explain why there was no consultation with First Nation governments before these tax changes were introduced?Read more
WHITEHORSE – The Yukon Party government will try to buy Yukoners’ hearts and minds with their own money when the legislature sits this week, says Liberal Leader Sandy Silver.
“This has become the typical cycle with this government, as an election approaches they will begin building more new projects than local contractors can handle, resulting in employment for larger firms in the south,” said Silver. “What the territory needs is a consistent project building schedule that ensures local contractors receive the lion’s share of the work, and keeps dollars in Yukon. Mining is boom and bust, government spending shouldn't be.”Read more
Whitehorse: A $20 million increase in the cost of the new F.H. Collins school project tells the Yukon public all they need to know about the 2014-2015 budget released yesterday, says Liberal Leader Sandy Silver. Until today the government had maintained the cost of the project was only $31.1 million. Updated budget documents released yesterday put the real cost of replacing the school at $51.1 million.Read more
Mr. Silver: Mr. Speaker, I have a question for the Premier. Over the last number of years, the Auditor General of Canada has produced regular reports detailing the financial handiwork of this government, from education to asset-backed commercial paper, to the most recent findings regarding the Yukon Hospital Corporation. These reports have documented the financial mismanagement of the Yukon Party government.
In his budget speech, the Premier was criticizing the findings of the Auditor General. The Yukon government has its own audit service located in the Premier’s department. Its last report to the public was December 2011, some 15 months ago. That report was actually a follow-up to a 2008 study. The last new report was August 2011, some 19 months ago.
In the past, this office produced regular reports. Why has it been 19 months since the public has seen anything from the internal auditor?Read more
Mr. Silver: I have a question for the Minister of Finance. The centerpiece of the budget we’re debating this spring is a $27-million bailout of the Yukon Hospital Corporation. It was only a couple of years ago that the Yukon Party government
brushed off concerns about the amount of debt the Hospital Corporation was running up, insisting it was not biting off more than it could chew. It was only a couple of years ago that the Government of Yukon was insisting, despite the fact that it generates almost no revenue, the Hospital Corporation was capable of paying off almost $70 million in loans by renting space back to the government.
It was a financial agreement based on fantasy. Well, that fantasy came to an end this spring in the form of a $27-million bailout.
Why was the corporation allowed to borrow this money in the first place, when there was really no plan to pay it back?Read more
Whitehorse: Vuntut Gwitchin MLA Darius Elias and Klondike MLA Sandy Silver say that the Government’s budget is not believable, and that it breaks many of the promises that the Yukon Party made to Yukoners.Read more