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Simple answers to Complex Questions and Complex Answers to Simple Questions. In real life, I'm a Greater-Toronto (Canada) Realtor with RE/MAX Hallmark Realty Ltd, Brokerage. I first joined RE/MAX in 1983 and was first Registered to Trade in Real Estate in Ontario in 1974. Formerly known as "Two-Finger Ramblings of a Forensic Acuitant turned Community Synthesizer"

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Saturday, May 27, 2006

"Phoney" fiscal Imbalance - The Solution

Dear Recorder & Times Editor,

The story by Joan Bryden, "Fiscal imbalance a phoney excuse to weaken the federal government: report " on various organizations' suggestions to repair the fiscal integrity of Canada, came sooooo close to actually solving the problem. http://www.recorder.ca/cp/National/060524/n0524113A.html

The solution is for Ottawa to take over "healthcare funding" which I think most people would agree is quite different from BNA Act s 92(7) "The Establishment, Maintenance, and Management of Hospitals, Asylums, Charities, and Eleemosynary Institutions in and for the Province, other than Marine Hospitals".
http://laws.justice.gc.ca/en/const/c1867_e.html#distribution

If this BNA provision is the only reason for the provinces WANTING to keep control of this should-be-national, tax-revenue-gobbling nightmare of a responsibility, perhaps they could be induced to pass the responsibility to fund 100% of healthcare over to the Dominion gov't, IF at the same time the Dominion gov't assumed all the "provincial purpose" debts.

A similar debt-assumption deal was part of original Confederation in 186 7 and, also was done in exchange for the colony/provinces giving up some former responsibilities. Duly noted then and now, the debts were assumed on a formula, and payments were granted to provinces whose debt-ratio was lower than than others. BNA 1967 ss.111,112,114,115,116,119 http://laws.justice.gc.ca/en/const/c1867_e.html#revenues

IF this plan was enacted the Dominion gov't could supervise the implementation of the Canada Health Act without force or coercion and all people in Canada would be subject to a universal plan - shouldn't the pool of contributors be a big as possible anyway?

In addition, with both health and debt charges off the provincial books, very little in additional equalization/transfers would be required.


Robert Ede


P.S The down-side I suppose is that once we had a National Health Plan, the public would soon see that the unified Healthcare program was consuming an amount just about equal to the total of ALL (ie Federal + Provincial) Personal Income Taxes. It would soon be obvious that the most publicly-coveted and grandest-seeming of all of Canada's Free Social Programs was always paid by taxpayers.

Always that is except for the time during the early-70's thru the mid 90's (when the Baby boom was over, but the gov't dared not raise taxes to pay for the ballooning costs of healthcare) when the Dominion government simply borrowed the shortfall between health costs and tax revenue. We now call that the Interest Bearing Debt ($615.3 Billion Gross and $499.9 B Net , Public Accts Mar31/05 ) that costs the Dominion gov't $ 34.1 billion annually to service interest-only.
http://www.pwgsc.gc.ca/recgen/pdf/v1pa05-e.pdf (text pg 1.3, PDF pg9)

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