The province’s finance minister is disappointed with the fact unions are not adhering to a three and a half percent wage cut that was asked for in the last budget.
Donna Harpauer says it is frustrating to see, but collective bargaining with public-sector unions will go on.
“Obviously it hasn’t come to fruition at any of the tables and there are a number of tables negotiating and we’ll continue to try, but it doesn’t look promising,” Harpauer said.
A contingency fund of 300-million dollars was built into the budget.
The province may be forced to dip into that fund as one means of covering costs since the unions are not willing to do what MLA’s did–which is take the wage reduction.
Harpauer was hoping unions would see what the government is trying to accomplish, but that isn’t happen resulting in some worry.
“Of course it’s concerning, because it is large dollars and our resource revenues are down so we’re looking for that money and we’re hoping that you know somewhere they would sort of follow the example that we have set, but if that’s not going to be the case then we are just going to have to account for it within our budget,” Harpauer told reporters.
The NDP believes this is another example of fiscal mismanagement accusing the Wall government of never believing that the cut would be accepted, thus they will use money from the province’s contingency fund to make up the costs of the proposed rollbacks.