Newfoundland and Labrador's Opposition parties are having a hard time swallowing the numbers coming out in Tuesday's budget announcement.
The Dunderdale government projected a 2013-14 deficit of $1.6 billion just two months ago, but Finance Minister Jerome Kennedy announced in the budget that number has dropped to $563.8 million.
Liberal leader Dwight Ball said he was shocked to hear the deficit had been reduced by approximately $1 billion.
"I was astounded when we went into the lockup this morning just to see that, once again, the numbers for the budgeting process is wrong," Ball said.
"[I'm] not surprised, because this is something I guess we've seen for years now from this government."
Ball said this government can't be trusted to project an accurate 10-year forecast.
"We can't get a forecast right at three months, and we're expected and asked to have confidence in this government to be able to do one for ten years — it just doesn't make sense to me," he said.
Michael doubts figures, timing
NDP Leader Lorraine Michael said government managed to find a large amount of money in a short amount of time.
"I'm wondering how they could find $1 billion in 60 days because that's what they've done, apparently," Michael said.
"I wondered then how they got the $1.6 billion, now I'm really wondering how they got the $1.6 billion because they got rid of a billion already, so I can't trust their figures at all."
Michael said the people of the province will not find the cuts an easy pill to swallow.
"I think they're going to have a hard time trying to sell it to the public," she said. "I don't think their game of coming up with a balanced budget for election year is going to work for them because people are going to see the negative effects over two years, and they're not going to be convinced all of a sudden by a budget switch in the election year."
According to Michael, the layoffs will have a negative impact on government approval.
"You're not going to fool people who are being told, 'We care about families,' when working people are losing their jobs," she said.