Saskatchewan’s finance minister is ready to dig in his heels at meetings this week when it comes to public-pension reform.
Kevin Doherty meets with his federal and provincial counterparts Sunday and Monday in Ottawa. The Liberal government’s election promises will be on the table, as well as infrastructure spending, a re-vamped child-benefit plan, and reform for the Canada Pension Plan.
“We’re going to talk about Canada Pension Plan enhancement and how we might be able to work together in that regard,” said Federal Finance Minister Bill Morneau when asked about the meeting recently.
Doherty expects that means possible increases to the CPP, which he is not on board with, mainly because he sees it as essentially a payroll tax.
“We don’t think our economy, where it’s at right now, any business in the province of Saskatchewan can withstand, or needs to have additional mandatory contribution forced upon them … We can’t tax our way to prosperity. We can’t tax our way to income security in your retirement years.”
Doherty said there are several other measures available for people to increase their retirement savings.
In a recent statement, the federal Finance Department called the federal and provincial governments joint stewards of the CPP. It said major changes to the plan would need support from Ottawa as well as seven of the 10 province representing at least two-thirds of Canada’s population.
With files from the Canadian Press.