HALIFAX – Blaming a soft economy, Nova Scotia’s finance minister says her latest budget forecast indicates the province’s deficit is continuing to grow.
Maureen MacDonald says the projected deficit for the 2012-2013 fiscal year now stands at $277 million, a $66-million increase when compared to the budget tabled last April.
Despite the fiscal setback, MacDonald says the NDP government remains committed to balancing the books by next spring.
She says departmental spending is under control, but revenue has dropped by $90 million — mainly because of a $61 million decrease in projected income tax revenue.
MacDonald says another big chunk of the revenue decline can be attributed to the deferral of a $36-million federal contribution for the planned Halifax convention centre.
As well, she says the province’s economy is expected to grow more slowly than expected because of economic uncertainty.
Note to readers: This is a corrected story. A previous version said the deferral of federal funds for a new convention centre would be for one year.