ALBERTA

Alberta Budget 2015: Government Will Keep Spending, Despite Debt

10/27/2015 05:29 EDT | Updated 10/27/2015 06:59 EDT
Jeff Whyte

EDMONTON — Alberta's NDP government will forge ahead with building and hiring, but the devastating impact of low oil prices has it planning to borrow money just to keep the lights on.

The 2015-16 budget lays out a plan for $34 billion in capital spending over the next five years to create jobs and build schools, roads and hospitals.

There is also to be more money for health, education and social services, as well as a new program that gives employers $5,000 for each new job they create.

But it all comes at a steep price.

Alberta is on track to rack up almost $37 billion in debt by 2018 and as much as $47 billion by the end of the decade.

And, starting next year, Alberta will have to borrow money to pay for day-to-day operations _ something that hasn't been done in 20 years.

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