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FAO finds spending increases in health and education

By Randy Thoms Dec 19, 2023 | 4:15 PM

The provincial government is spending more money than it did last year, but it is still less than planned.

That is according to the Financial Accountability Office in a review of the first half expenditures for the 2023-24 fiscal year.

The FAO says the province planned to spend $85.6 billion but still had $2.0 billion that was not utilized.

Most sectors spent less between April and September, with $1.5 billion less on various programs such as electricity subsidy programs, infrastructure, social assistance programs, a health capital program and childcare.

Health and Justice are two areas where spending was higher than expected.

Healthcare spending is $811 million more than planned.

Compared to the previous year, the provincial spending for the first six months of the fiscal year is up by $3 billion.

Health has seen a $1.6 million increase, with education up $611 and children, community and social services sector up $495 million.

The province also drew $277 million from the Contingency Fund to pay for programs.

The FAO says there is still $2.9 billion in the fund.