The Liberal Critic for Finance, Mr. Carlos J. Leitão, is seizing the opportunity presented by the upcoming economic update to reiterate the importance of actions that will return as much money as possible to Quebecers’ pocketbooks and improve the services that they currently receive.
Funding for Ratio-Projects in Nursing Care
The government must finance new ratio-projects in nursing care to reduce the number of patients per nurse, a measure whose cost is estimated at 350 million dollars per year. The decrease in patient-to-nurse ratios has generated positive impacts on care, reduced the number of falls among seniors, enhanced workplace environments and reduced burnout among nurses.
Free Public Transportation
In an effort to encourage access to sustainable transportation services, the government must finance public transportation for full-time students and senior citizens throughout Quebec, a measure that is estimated at 200 million dollars. Public transportation must be more accessible, less expensive, faster and better integrated within our communities. Recall that the Quebec Liberal Party made a commitment to that effect during the most recent election campaign.
Taxation for Internet Giants
The urgent need to tax Internet giants like Google, Apple, Facebook, Amazon and Microsoft (GAFAM) was mentioned by all of the stakeholders who took part in the Commission on the Future of Media. Taxing Internet giants’ advertising revenues at 3%, as is done in some other parts of the world, would generate government revenues of 20 million dollars annually for Facebook alone. These sums must be put into a fund dedicated to Quebec culture and media.
Additional Resources to Implement the Viens Report and the Final Report on Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women
The Public Inquiry Commission on Relations Between Indigenous Peoples and Certain Public Services in Quebec tabled its final report, the Viens Report, which contained 142 calls to action. Similarly, the final report on the National Inquiry on Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women was published on June 3, 2019. It contains, among others, calls for justice that pertain to Quebec. Additional resources are necessary and must be released by the Government of Quebec in order to implement these reports’ recommendations.
The government made many promises to Quebecers. There are also negotiations with the public sector that will force the Coalition Avenir Québec to make choices. Quebec’s economy is healthy, the government is swimming in surpluses, but money must also be managed for the future. Decisions will have to be made. The CAQ cannot fulfill all of its promises and maintain a balanced budget. The economic update will tell us more about this government’s true priorities.
– Carlos J. Leitão, MNA representing Robert-Baldwin and Official Opposition Critic for Finance