NDP Leader Dominic Cardy

NDP Leader Dominic Cardy said his party would end corporate welfare if elected. (CBC)

NDP Leader Dominic Cardy stood in front of the old Atcon site near Miramichi on Friday to promise an end to corporate welfare if his party wins the Sept. 22 election.

“The moment a new NDP government takes office, the era of corporate bailouts is over,” Cardy said in a statement.

“Let what happened right here be a lesson that Liberal and Tory policies create debt, not jobs.”

Cardy picked the former Atcon site as a symbol for corporate welfare because of the $50 million in loan guarantees the business received from the former Liberal government before it went bankrupt.

According to the NDP leader, the provincial governments of both the Liberals and the Tories gave $150 million to companies that no longer exist between 2005 and 2011.

He said New Brunswick has one of the highest unemployment rates in the country and the economic development policies of the two traditional parties have not helped create jobs.

“Corporate welfare chokes off economic growth and discourages investors. Liberals and Conservatives love talking about ‘creating jobs’ but often that means bribing outside companies with your tax dollars,” Cardy said in a statement.

The NDP leader said he would eliminate the small business tax, create a New Jobs Tax Credit and spend more money on skills training and education.

Cardy said his policies will actually create jobs.

“In New Brunswick we cannot afford to continue bribing companies with our tax dollars to come here. Instead, the new NDP will focus on empowering local communities, improving education, the training and retraining of workers and investing in core programs. We can’t afford to be buying temporary jobs,” he said.

“A new NDP government will create an economic environment and skilled workforce that will attract business to New Brunswick.”