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Tuesday, August 3, 2021
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Health care, economic recovery main pillars of Alberta Budget 2021

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EDMONTON, AB – Investments in health care and preparing for economic recovery through the COVID-19 pandemic are the focuses of Alberta Budget 2021.

The document was unveiled on Thursday afternoon and includes no new tax increases.

Finance Minister Travis Toews says Budget 2021 ensures health-care funding to see all Albertans through the pandemic. “At the same time, it lays the foundation for economic growth and job creation while carefully managing Albertans’ hard-earned tax dollars. It’s a budget that protects our health-care system and positions Alberta to emerge from COVID-19 stronger than ever.”

You can read the full budget document here: Alberta Budget 2021

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Health Care

This budget includes a major investment in health care, setting aside a $1.25 billion contingency to fight COVID-19. Almost $900 million will be added to Health’s base budget to reduce surgical wait times, increase continuing care, and home care capacity.

Continuing care will be bolstered by $200 million this year, as well, and the government’s investment of $140 million over four years into mental health and addictions treatment continues.

Economic Recovery

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The government’s three-year plan includes investing almost $21 billion in construction projects to support approximately 90,000 new jobs. This is $1.7 billion more than what was planned in Budget 2020 for 2021-22.

Careful Approach to Spending

Budget 2021 also aims put Alberta’s finances back on track. The UCP government says this includes public service wage efficiencies that will be reinvested into health care and economic recovery.

Revenue

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In 2021-22, total revenue is estimated to be $43.7 billion. This is $1.4 billion more than the 2020-21 forecast of $42.3 billion.

Deficit

A deficit of $18.2 billion is targeted for 2021-22. This is $2 billion less than the 2020-21 forecast.

 

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Patrick Siedlecki

Pat has been a mainstay in the CJOC News department from the time the station launched in 2007. He’s been in the position of New Director since then and has been anchoring daily news casts as well as reporting and working behind the scenes.

Community is important to him and keeping CJOC listeners and readers informed about what’s happening across southern Alberta and beyond.

Pat has been in radio broadcasting for the past 24 years, starting in Port Alberni on Vancouver Island in 1997 and then moving up island to Nanaimo for another few years before heading to Lethbridge in 2007.

Pat grew up in the small Saskatchewan farming town of Foam Lake. After high school, he went to Western Academy Broadcasting College (WABC) in Saskatoon prior to moving to the island.

Pat also spent several years broadcasting hockey in the BCHL as well as seven years as the radio voice of the Lethbridge Hurricanes in the WHL.

On a personal note, Pat has been working at Cornerstone Funeral Home in Lethbridge as a Certified Life Celebrant and funeral assistant since 2016.

Pat is engaged to Tarah and he has two kids and two step-children.

News and sports have always been Pat’s passion from the time he was a teenager and he’s always been grateful to have had the opportunity to make that part of what’s been a fun and long radio career!

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