QUEBEC – Quebec’s new premier says the province’s deficit for the most recent fiscal year is $600 million more than projected.
Philippe Couillard says the 2013-14 deficit has clocked in at more than $3.1 billion instead of the $2.5 billion mentioned by the Parti Quebecois before the recent election.
Speaking at his first news conference since becoming premier Wednesday, Couillard said Quebec needs to tighten its belt to clean up its public finances.
As a result, the government will strive to cut administrative costs as well as imposing a hiring freeze in the public sector.
Couillard is still aiming to meet the previous PQ government’s objective of having a balanced budget in 2015-16.
The premier also said the national assembly will reconvene on May 20 with a budget to be tabled in June.