Cabinet Minister Hajdu introduces mini-budget to help Canadians who are struggling the most

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A series of new economic initiatives announced last week by the federal government will help those who are struggling the most, said Patty Hajdu, Minister of Indigenous Services and Member of Parliament for Thunder Bay-Superior North.

Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland touted the fall economic statement as packed with measures to make life more affordable for Canadians, including eliminating interest on new and existing federal student and apprentice loans .

In Thunder Bay this week, Hajdu echoed that sentiment.

“Sometimes people who live in low-income situations and who are in generational low-income situations are afraid of going into debt for logical reasons,” Hajdu said. “There is a real anxiety to be able to repay.

When you add compound interest, debts can really loom,” she said. “So hopefully this will give people the assurance that, if they need access to loans to access post-secondary education, it is at least in an affordable way, and it will not. not bury them in debt as the years accumulate. »

Hajdu also cited the creation of a new tax-free home savings account for the first time, which she said « is going to be really, really helpful because young people are really worried about whether they will be able to whether or not to enter the housing market. »

A new benefit for low-wage workers will also help, as it will provide an upfront quarterly payment that will boost low-wage earners, Hajdu said.

Last week’s statement also included:

  • Reduce credit card transaction fees for small businesses;
  • Double the tax credit for the purchase of a first home;
  • Investment tax credits for clean technologies, and
  • A new tax on share buybacks by Canadian public corporations.

Livio Di Matteo, an economics professor at Lakehead University, said the fall economic statement lays the groundwork for next year’s full federal budget, without going into too much detail.

« If you look at the document, even a quick glance, there’s an awful lot of uncertainty there, » Di Matteo said. « On the one hand, inflation is high, interest rates are rising, and so I think the government is basically trying to reassure businesses and markets that they have their finances under control. »

« At the same time, he’s trying to reassure the public, especially middle and lower income people, that they have their backs, so to speak, and are there with support. »

How prepared is the federal government to help Canadians weather a recession?

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance of Canada, Chrystia Freeland, joins Rosemary Barton Live to discuss Ottawa’s plan to manage the economy and help Canadians through tough economic times.

However, Di Matteo said the statement did not include many articles targeting Northern Ontario.

« There are no additional special announcements for FedNor funding, » he said. “They are considering various types of clean energy tax credits, accelerating the development of natural resources.”

« Assuming this is actually implemented, it could contribute to economic development in northern Ontario, » said Di Matteo. « But economic development in Northern Ontario right now is probably more dependent on prices for forestry and mining products, and as long as those stay high, that should help. »

However, he said the fact that there are no major federal or provincial spending cuts is also good for the region, « given that about a third of employment is rooted in the broader public sector. « . For the north, it’s pretty stable for the most part. »

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