By The Canadian Press
WINNIPEG – The Manitoba government’s deficit last year turned out to be lower than expected.
Final, audited figures show the government ended the 2016-17 fiscal year with a shortfall of $764 million — $147 million lower than first predicted in the budget.
This year’s number is $75 million lower than last year’s deficit.
Finance Minister Cameron Friesen says the improvement is due mainly to higher-than-expected revenues from income taxes and user fees.
The previous NDP government started running deficits in 2009 and repeatedly pushed back deadlines to balance the budget.
The Progressive Conservatives, elected last year, have promised to balance the budget by 2024.
“By meeting our financial targets and addressing the fundamental risks that threaten the security and quality of services provided to Manitobans, we have now begun to put Manitoba on a path of responsible recovery,” Friesen said in a release Tuesday.