Premier Kenney says results of panel on Alberta finances coming in September

EDMONTON — Premier Jason Kenney says his government will unveil in early September the findings of a blue-ribbon panel doing a deep dive into Alberta's fiscal situation.

Kenney says he expects the panel, chaired by former Saskatchewan finance minister Janice MacKinnon, will report that Alberta's financial situation continues to deteriorate.

Unions and the NDP say Kenney is going to use the report to justify cutting wages, and possibly jobs, of public sector workers when he introduces the United Conservative government's first budget in October.

Kenney says those decisions have not been made and will depend in part on findings in the MacKinnon report.

But he says that the former NDP government budgeted on overly optimistic revenue projections that won't be realized, meaning that a period of “fiscal responsibility” is required.

While Kenney campaigned in February on not making cuts to the public sector, he says that the "financial mess'' left by the NDP has forced his government to re-evaluate.

© 2019 The Canadian Press

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