POLITICS
04/03/2012 03:12 EDT | Updated 06/03/2012 05:12 EDT

Oil-rich Newfoundland and Labrador to deliver spring budget on April 24

ST. JOHN'S, N.L. - Newfoundland and Labrador will deliver its spring budget in three weeks.

Provincial Finance Minister Tom Marshall announced today that the government would present the budget on April 24.

Premier Kathy Dunderdale has recently said that the province must rein in spending and cut debt, adding that years of fiscal surpluses over most of the last decade are about to give way to two years of predicted deficits.

That's partly because offshore oil production — the province's primary revenue generator — is expected to wane.

Dunderdale has ruled out tax hikes and program cuts, but instructed departments to trim costs by becoming more efficient.

Total provincial debt is estimated at about $7.7 billion this year, down from a high of $12 billion eight years ago.

Late last year, Marshall predicted deficits of about $400 million for 2012-13 and $211 million in 2013-14.