Saskatchewan is off to a strong start as 2024 unfolds. Our government remains committed to building and protecting our province.
Last fall, the federal government’s decision to exempt the carbon tax on home heating oil in Atlantic Canada left Saskatchewan families out in the cold. That’s why our government is protecting Saskatchewan families’ ability to afford to heat their homes this winter. Starting January 1, 2024, SaskEnergy and SaskPower removed the federal carbon tax from natural gas home heating and electrical home heating. This will result in savings for approximately 98 per cent of Saskatchewan families. Our government will continue to ensure fairness and protect the people of Saskatchewan.
Low personal taxes and indexation are also among the measures our government is taking to help make life more affordable here in Saskatchewan. A family of four with an annual income of $75,000 will save $322 in 2024 due to indexing personal income tax. Indexation protects against bracket creep, which is the automatic tax increases caused by inflation.
Today, a family of four in Saskatchewan pays no income tax on their first $59,475 of income. When our government took office in 2007, a family of four started paying income tax at $26,150 of income. Reductions our government introduced have more than doubled the tax-free threshold. Saskatchewan also has among the lowest personal taxes in Canada.
Along with helping affordability is our government’s commitment to investing in infrastructure so that the people of Saskatchewan can continue to be served better. The Prince Albert Victoria Hospital project is progressing well. Upon completion, the hospital will have a larger emergency department, enhanced medical imaging services including MRI, and an increased number of beds from 173 to 242. This development will serve the residents of Prince Albert and surrounding communities for years to come.
We continue to move forward on our government’s commitment to health care training investments. This year, our government is providing $9.7 million in funding to support the operations, training programs and services, including training seat expansions in health care and skilled trades.
Our government recently invested an additional $850,000 in the Saskatchewan Institute of Technologies (SIIT). This funding will support 25 additional seats in the Mental Health and Wellness Diploma program, bringing the program capacity to 175 in 2023-24. Graduates will have the technical and cultural competencies needed to provide quality care upon program completion. The two-year program and clinical placements will occur in Saskatoon and Indigenous communities.
Our government continues to move forward on building and protecting a strong Saskatchewan. If you have questions or concerns, reach out to my constituency office by phone at 306-763-7677 or by email at email@example.com. Or you are always welcome to stop by the office at #7, 598 15th Street East.