No Changes Despite Debt Downgrade From 'Stable' To 'Negative': NB Finance Minister

Posted on Tuesday, February 27, 2018 11:55 AM

Despite the downgrading of New Brunswick's debt from stable to negative by the credit rating agency Dominion Bond Rating Service, the provincial Finance Minister isn't making changes.

Cathy Rogers says they are sticking with their latest plan to return to fiscal balance by 2021-2022, but they are treating this downgrade as warning.

"It is exactly why we are investing where we are, we're investing strategically, and while we know economic growth has slowed, we are still on the growth incline as opposed to decline as in past years," says Rogers.

In 2015, Auditor General Kim MacPherson said despite an increase in revenue of $261 million, mainly through a HST hike from 13% to 15%, the province still ran a deficit because they increased spending by $362 million.

In 2017, if net debt was to be paid off by contributions from New Brunswickers, it would take $18,300 per person to pay it off, that's compared to $9,483 per capita in 2008.