Our running tracker of the impact of the Alberta budget
CBC News is tracking where dollars have been spent by the UCP government
Last updated: January 12, 2020
It can seem overwhelming to keep track of all the cuts and funding initiatives introduced as part of a provincial budget. The news cycle moves on so quickly that major stories can often be lost in the shuffle.
That's why we've decided to consolidate all of them in one place for your easy reference. We'll update this list weekly, so add it to your bookmarks if you'd like to refer back.
- Budget 2019: Albertans to pay more as United Conservative government reins in spending
- From income taxes to AirBnB rentals: How Alberta's new budget will affect your personal finances
The United Conservative Party government's 2019 budget provides $5.1 billion for Advanced Education operations, which represents a five-per-cent cut over the previous year.
Operating expenses were reduced by 12 per cent to $4.8 billion by 2022-23, largely by reducing provincial grants.
The University of Calgary said 250 jobs will be impacted by funding cuts. Tuition and education tax credits are also being cut.
- University of Calgary to slash 250 jobs after provincial funding cuts
- Colleges and universities learn the extent of cuts to government grants
Students at the U of C can now expect anything from a zero per cent increase to a 15 per cent increase to their tuition — depending on what program they're in.
MacEwan University students will pay approximately $457 more in tuition in the next academic year. The University of Alberta is set to see a $44.2-million cut.
The budget for kindergarten to Grade 12 education is $8.2 billion, the same amount that was spent last year, but the UCP abolished three grants: Class Size Funding, Classroom Improvement and School Fee Reduction, which totalled $428 million and only partially replaced those cuts with a one-time transition grant of $153 million.
- Facing $32M cut in provincial funding, CBE says 'all options being explored'
- Calgary Board of Education cuts 300 temporary teachers' contracts
- Brace yourselves for higher bus fees, fewer teachers at Calgary public schools
After the CBE announced it would cut 300 temporary teachers, Alberta Education Minister Adriana LaGrange ordered a provincial review and accused the public school board of "reckless" misspending.
LaGrange later informed the province's school boards that they could apply for one-time access to funding earmarked for maintenance to support classroom and school-based staffing costs.
- CBE says repurposing maintenance dollars won't compromise student safety
- CBE trustees release document to combat budget 'misconceptions'
The Calgary Catholic School District is facing a $11-million reduction in funding as a result of the budget, and will also incur $6-million in costs associated with growth.
The parents of 11,000 Edmonton public school students will have to start paying busing fees for the last five months of the school year.
Funding appeared to favour smaller schools. Alternative schooling saw an increase of $4 million as part of the budget.
The Alberta government is investing $1.8 billion from its capital plan for the construction of new schools and the modernization of existing schools across the province.
The funding includes $397 million over five years for 25 new and modernized school projects, which will be announced at a later date.
As part of the budget, public sector funds were expected to be transferred to the Crown corporation Alberta Investment Management Corporation (AIMCo) for management.
The budget cuts 2,100 public service positions — a 7.7 per cent reduction — by 2023.
- Alberta's public unions prep for a fight, whether in the streets or the courts
- Provincial budget cuts could take toll on Edmonton and public sector, critics say
- Hundreds of public sector workers protest post-secondary layoffs
- Layoffs hit Alberta Innovates in wake of provincial budget
Nearly 6,000 Alberta public-sector jobs could be eliminated as the UCP government tries to cut costs and find efficiencies.
Municipal funding from the province decreased in the budget, meaning that Calgary and Edmonton will have to make cuts, raise taxes, or both.
- Under new budget, median household will pay $150 more in property tax
- Slash, tax or make do: Edmonton council looks at options after Alberta budget
The budget also reduced funding for Calgary's Green Line, offering up just 14 per cent of the project's expected funding for the next four years with the remainder promised for future years.
- Green Line future at risk after 86% cut in provincial funding over next 4 years
- Tempers flare as committee weighs future of Green Line
Calgary's police faced a $13-million reduction to the service's 2019 budget. The province will keep a greater share of revenues from traffic tickets at a rate of $10 million a year and will charge police for forensic testing at a cost of $2 million. A reduction in cannabis tax revenues will cost Calgary police approximately $1 million per year.
Funding was eventually maintained due to Calgary city council's decision to approve a 1.5 per cent tax hike on Nov. 29.
- Police hit hard by provincial budget cuts for Calgary
- Here's how much money Calgary police actually get from the province
Edmonton city jobs are also on the line as council weighs options to keep its property tax increase to 2.6 per cent or bring it to zero.
Health-care spending in Alberta rose by $201 million to a total of $20.6 billion as a part of the UCP budget.
The government increased funding in some areas, including $100 million on mental health, $40 million to fight opioid addiction and $20 million on palliative care over four years.
But the budget also revealed that indexing would be put on hold until the deficit was eliminated. That means Assured Income for the Severely Handicapped Program (AISH) recipients who receive $1,685 each month will see approximately $35 less in purchasing power next year, depending on inflation.
- 'It really upsets me': AISH recipients worry about halt to indexing
- 'Cruel' measure reduces support for young Albertans transitioning out of gov't care
- OPINION | Yes, Alberta's budget raises taxes. Yes, it cuts AISH. No, it's not 'austerity.'
The United Nurses of Alberta said Alberta Health Services was reducing staff by 750 front-line nurses.
Film, video games and tech
The budget eliminated a number of tax credits and grants that have made a significant impact on Alberta's gaming, film and tech industries.
The Alberta video game industry, which relied on the Interactive Digital Media Tax Credit last year, now faces an uncertain future.
- B.C. gaming studio says Alberta budget throws wrench in Calgary expansion plans
- 'I felt betrayed': Gaming companies unsure of future in Alberta after tax credit axed
- Alberta's video game industry assesses future after tax credit axed
The film industry in Alberta was similarly rocked by the budget.
Five tax credits utilized by Calgary's tech scene — including the Alberta Investor Tax Credit (AITC) and the Capital Investment Tax Credit — were axed in the budget, and are expected to save $400 million by 2022-23, according to the government.
That move has some local technology companies reconsidering their future in the province.
The Alberta budget slashes the corporate tax rate from 12 to eight per cent by 2022-23. It is part of a larger strategy to lure investment to the province. The small business tax rate remained at two per cent. The corporate tax rate only applies to businesses making more than $500,000 per year in profit.
- Why Alberta's corporate tax cut might not keep investment at home
- Alberta finance minister on defensive after 'job creation' tax cut spurs spending elsewhere
- Alberta looks to private sector and pipelines to deliver better times
Though the government said they would not increase tax, the amount Albertans will pay will effectively go up, as the amount residents are allowed to exempt will not increase.
The province is also increasing this year's education property tax, which will be passed on to municipal residents.
The province's justice system is due to see some significant cuts and some funding bumps aligned with the UCP rural crime strategy.
Alberta Justice is also preparing to lay off 90 civil-law lawyers as its legal services division struggles to absorb a $20-million budget cut, according to an internal memo obtained by CBC News.
There were a number of other cuts made by the Alberta government that do not fit under other categories.
Alberta's Helitack-Rappel, or RAP program, enabled firefighters to rappel from helicopters to fight forest fires. That program was cut, garnering an annual savings of $1.4 million.
- Alberta ends program for firefighters rappelling from helicopters
- Forestry minister says cutting firefighting rappel program not a 'risky roll of the dice'
Alberta's Summer Temporary Employment Program was also axed as part of the budget, and will save about $32 million over four years, according to the budget.
Two child-care subsidies will also be cut by the Alberta government in January.
All told, Alberta's budget forecasts a return to a surplus of $584 million in the 2022-23 fiscal year.
We're going to try to keep track of the cuts and funding stemming from the Alberta government's budget and we'll update it weekly — but if we've missed anything, we want to know. Send your tips to firstname.lastname@example.org