Alberta Environment Minister Shannon Phillips was out selling her government's budget Friday, March 23.

She's making no apologies for a $54 billion debt, expected to grow to $96 billion by 2023, or for borrowing to pay operating expenses and service the debt.

"Certainly we did do that during the recession because the alternative would have been devastating cuts to health care, education and so on. One of the alternatives would have been to not fund the $33 million in flood rehabilitation in High River."

The Province says they can eliminate the deficit by 2023 with a mix of the carbon tax, expected to rise by 67 per cent, when combined with the Federal carbon tax, and higher oil revenues through the Trans Mountain pipeline when it gets built.


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