OTTAWA – Highlights from the throne speech delivered Wednesday by Gov. Gen. David Johnston:
— Legislation coming to require balanced budgets during normal economic times and strict timelines for restoring balance in the event of an crisis.
— Negotiations will soon be complete in a long-awaited comprehensive trade agreement with the European Union.
— The overall federal operating budget will be frozen.
— Government hiring will be restrained, spending systems will be reformed and public service pay and benefits will be “reasonable, responsible and in the public interest.”
— Malala Yousafzai, the young Pakistani activist who was targeted by the Taliban over her efforts to promote education for girls, will be given honorary Canadian citizenship.
— Canadians will be permitted to take beer and spirits across provincial boundaries for personal consumption.
— The government will take steps to reduce cell phone roaming costs and will require TV providers to unbundle channels to allow consumers to pick and choose.
— The government says it will renew efforts to address the issue of murdered and missing aboriginal women.
— New tough-on-crime legislation will ensure that the worst criminals serve sentences for life and will end the practice of automatic early release for serious, repeat offenders.
— The government will get tougher on drug policy and “close loopholes that allow for the feeding of addiction under the guise of treatment.”
— The government will reach out to offer more support to homeless veterans and build on a program to put veterans in good jobs.
— The National War Memorial will be re-dedicated to the memory of all who fought for the country.