Surplus Down in Quarterly Financial Update

-With files from the Canadian Press-

The Saskatchewan government is forecasting a lower surplus than budgeted this year due to decreased resource revenues and higher expenses.

In her first-quarter fiscal update, finance minister Donna Harpauer says the province expects a $485.5 million surplus this year, down 52 per cent from the $1 billion surplus that was projected in the spring.

Harpauer says revenues are forecast to be $19.6 billion, down 0.6 per cent and largely due to an expected reduction in resource revenues.

She says potash and oil prices are lower than what was forecasted.

Harpauer says the government also spent more this quarter due to wildfires this spring, as well as a non-cash pension expense.

She says these reductions are offset by tax revenue, particularly the provincial sales tax.

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