The federal government released their budget for 2018 yesterday and local southeast area residents and business owners are looking at how it will affect us. 

"It looks like it was big on spending but a little short on growth," shared Jackie Wall, Executive Director of the Estevan Chamber of Commerce. "That's how the Canadian Chamber is terming this budget."

One of the topics the budget discussed was closing the wage gap between male and female employees in the federal sectors.

"I think for most businesses, it's top of mind that if you have two people of different genders in the same role, that it's pretty standard if they're doing the same job, they're getting the same pay. That has been something that I think Saskatchewan really has been pushing for that for a long time. I think it's important in our business sector but it seems that it is pretty standard for most business that if you have two people of different genders in the same role, they are making the same money."

There was also a few changes to the small business tax. 

"I think in general the cost of running a business in Canada continues to rise and we see that with taxation both the obvious taxes and the hidden taxes. Without a strong private sector, there is really no way we can expand and grow and prosper."

"I think the federal government really needs to take a look at that and consider that in all of their decisions when it comes to small business. Small business is the main driving factor of business in Canada and anytime there is a change that makes it more difficult for a business to operate or increases costs, it hurts the economy right across the board."

As well, the carbon tax continues to be a looming concern as Saskatchewan remains the only holdout. 

"The carbon tax is one that is going to continue to be a fight into 2018 and I think it goes right back to being competitive. We need to stay competitive as Canadians in our own economy and of course when we factor in our neighbours to the south. They are getting less regulations it seems with the new administration and now we are competing with businesses that are not going to have to pay carbon taxes and it's going to increase costs here in Canada.

"As soon as costs increase, that is passed along to the consumer. It seems that the government is forgetting that if we have a strong economy and businesses are making money, the more the economy prospers, the government propers through taxation, not by raising taxes but by raising the prosperity of businesses across the board."

"It looks like when it comes to business, it could have been a little more comprehensive and considerate of keeping Canadian businesses competitive." 

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