As you enjoy the remaining days of summer, I wanted to take the opportunity to provide a brief update on what our Conservative Government has accomplished on your behalf over the past session of Parliament.
Nearly sixteen months ago, Canadians made a historic decision in selecting a strong, stable, national, majority Conservative Government to help lead the country through a time of global economic fragility. Since then, our Government has worked hard and made critical choices resulting in accomplishments that are making a difference in the lives of all Canadians.
A GOVERNMENT FOCUSED ON JOBS, GROWTH AND LONG-TERM ECONOMIC PROSPERITY
Canada’s economic recovery is based on our Economic Action Plan – a strong plan that has helped guide our country through the worst global recession since the 1930s. All the while, our Conservative Government has held jobs, growth and long-term economic prosperity as its main priorities. While Canada’s recovery serves as an example to the world, it remains fragile. Therefore, our Government has taken targeted and prudent steps to help businesses compete, communities to thrive, and families to prosper.
We’re supporting jobs and growth in the Canadian economy by:
- investing $205 million into extending the Hiring Credit for Small Business for one year, helping small businesses hire additional workers;
- providing an additional $50 million over two years to the Youth Employment Strategy, assisting more young Canadians in gaining tangible skills and work experience;
- delivering a number of targeted, common-sense amendments to the Employment Insurance (EI) program, so that it is more efficient at job creation, provides additional incentives to accept available work that is reasonable in the circumstances, and is better at connecting people to jobs more quickly;
- promoting the involvement of small- and medium-sized businesses in the Atlantic and Western Canada Shipbuilding Action Plan projects;
- extending the accelerated capital cost allowance for manufacturing and processing machinery and equipment in 2011 for two years, supporting jobs and growth in the Canadian manufacturing and processing sector;
- maintaining the tariff-free status of machinery and equipment, boosting jobs and growth in the Canadian manufacturing and processing sector; and
- initiating the Red Tape Reduction Commission to reduce red tape and the compliance burden on small businesses.
In an effort to improve Canadian infrastructure from coast to coast to coast, our Conservative Government is:
- investing $150 million over two years for a new Community Infrastructure Improvement Fund, supporting repairs and improvements to existing community facilities;
- announcing a permanent annual investment of $2 billion in 2011 to the Gas Tax Fund, providing predictable long-term infrastructure funding for municipalities; and
- announcing in 2011, $148 million over the next five years to maintain bridges, dams and other specialized federal assets managed by Public Works and Government Services Canada across the country.
Finally, we’re taking action to bring Canada’s budget into balance by:
- committing to generating ongoing savings of $5.2 billion in government operations and departmental spending;
- remaining on track to achieve, well ahead of schedule, our G-20 commitments to cut the deficit in half by 2013; and
- accomplishing all this while increasing transfers to seniors and the provinces for education and health care.
These are many points to consider, but it is what this Conservative Government has accomplished in just one year of its mandate. It is all in an effort to stabilize our economic recovery, and to create jobs. Going forward, Canadians can be confident in our ability to continue our recovery, maintain our position as a global economic leader, keep taxes low, and deliver on value-added jobs.
I wish you and your family an enjoyable week ahead.
Leon Benoit, MP