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Over the long weekend, many Ontarians took time to visit friends and family across the province. For many, a topic of conversation over dining tables or dockside drinks was the state of the province and revelations from the past week of the conduct of Premier Kathleen Wynne. But where to begin?
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Planning a vacation to an idyllic tropical destination is never a bad idea, but it's not always feasible. Often, the further you go, the more you're likely to pay, but you don't have to leave the country to get the beachside escape you're craving -- you have more than enough options right at home.
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The NDP government of Rachel Notley is showing the rest of Canada, and Newfoundland and Labrador in particular, that when tough times hit, we look after each other. Across the country, the Liberal government of Dwight Ball is showing no such compassion, bringing in tax hikes and service cuts that hurt those with the lowest incomes most.
What you don't have to do forever is live with debt. You don't have to spend every month calculating how much you can afford to put towards debt repayment, while continuing to use credit, and staying in the never-ending cycle of borrowing money and trying to pay it back. It's not an easy cycle to get out of; I know that firsthand.
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The first budget delivered by the Liberals signaled a return to 1970s Trudeaupian Liberalism, not just with its flagrant disregard for balanced budgets and ballooning debt, but also by disregarding a core accountability under our Constitution: Canada's military.
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By making it easier to navigate the tax rules and meet their obligations, Canadians will spend less time and less of their money on preparing their taxes, leaving more in their pockets. For Canadian businesses, productivity could improve as they spend less time, effort and capital dealing with tax compliance and red tape.
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The Canadian Forces will once again have to wait to receive new much-needed equipment. Whether it is new fighter aircraft, ships or vehicles, the federal budget has postponed more than $3.7 billion in military spending until 2020 -- or later. As a matter of fact, the latest federal budget is another slap to the Canadian Forces' face. Bill Morneau, Canada's finance minister, said the Liberals are postponing defence spending to figure out defence priorities.
All the tips on budgeting are based on people who get paid on a regular schedule, but if you're an actor, musician, etc., you'll get a chunk of change all at one time and then often have a dry spell. It's so easy to blow through the money that you get paid and then have nothing left for the few months that you're waiting for that next gig.
But finance department officials said the government could still find a need to advertise aspects of the budget later on.
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Among the biggest obstacles to ambitious efforts moving forward is a shortage of money at the local and provincial levels.
The finance minister says the Liberal government has only begun to clean up the tax code with his first federal budget.
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"What we showed Canadians was that we are going to do what we said we were going to do."
Canada's youth are the biggest winners from Tuesday's federal budget, but not in the way you'd expect. Buried deep inside the budget, well below the commendable financial commitments to First Nations, families and young children, is a potential game-changer for young people -- plans to create the first ever Prime Minister's Youth Council.
Much of the spending is backloaded to later years.
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The prime minister is leading a full court press to sell his government's maiden budget.
Immediately, after 9/11 attacks, the Arab and Muslim communities started receiving the "visits" of RCMP officers and CSIS agents asking them about their opinions on the Middle-East, about their religious beliefs, about their friends and what they know about them. Some of these "visits" were conducted at the workplace. At that time, no body spoke about radicalization, as if it was assumed that the targeted individuals came to Canada already "radicalized." The Muslim community was perceived on the "bad" side of the fight. They were always considered as not doing enough.
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Expect it to echo and put a price tag on key themes from the party's campaign platform.
We've seen this story before in the mid-1990s, when out-of-control deficits and an impending sovereign debt crisis led to painful spending cuts and tax increases. The government is wrong to make the return to budget balance conditional on strong economic growth. Population aging is already taking its toll on long-term projections, and too many unforeseen events can derail the fiscal path. Only tight fiscal discipline can balance the budget within a reasonable timeframe, protecting Canadians' standards of living from future large tax increases and cuts to government services.
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"That is money in the pockets of mom and dad."
Over 26,000 Syrians have arrived in Canada since the Liberals took power in November.
Liberals will spend just $2.7 billion in first year.
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Government insiders, speaking on condition of anonymity, said there would be few surprises in the budget.
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There are now doubts whether the party can even fulfill its most-flexible fiscal vow.
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The Liberals had pledged during the election campaign to undo the Conservatives' decision to raise the age of eligibility for OAS.
March Break is just around the corner, and if you're like many Canadians, you're probably wondering how you're going to afford to pay for it. Luckily, there's an easy way to save money, keep your children happy, and teach them a few life lessons too. Use the break as an opportunity to put your kids in the classroom of life by involving them in the March Break budgeting process. Here's how:
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Morneau was at the centre of several heated exchanges that highlighted the philosophical difference between the Liberals and Tories on the importance of a balanced federal budget.
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While Valentine's Day is meant to be a celebratory holiday, many Canadians may be scaling back on showing their affection this year due to the state of the economy. Luckily for those in love, there are out of the (chocolate) box ways to save on Valentine's Day gifts and activities.
In Ottawa, the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) will once again convene a meeting of its 21 big city mayors. FCM is assembling the Big City Mayors' Caucus in advance of the federal budget, building on discussions which have been underway ever since the new government took office in late 2015.
"You can spend a lot of time talking about hypotheticals and I'm not going to engage in that."
Recent data from RetailMeNot.ca predicts that Canadians will spend an average of $1,425 per household during the holidays. To help keep your budget in check, check out these six tips for holiday spending this festive season.
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As trivago's best value cities list shows -- calculated using the annual average price of a standard double room and the city's average hotel rating -- planning a Canadian getaway in the New Year will not only be fun, it'll also be affordable.
From buying a new winter coat and gift exchanges with friends, to purchasing a ticket home and celebrating the end of exams, there is no doubt that the holidays and New Year's Eve can put stress on a student's finances.