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VICTORIA, B.C. – Finance Minister, Carole James, released the province’s financial picture as of March 31, 2017 on Tuesday.

The audited financial statements show an operating surplus of $2.7 billion. The BC Liberals, before being ousted, said the province was sitting with a surplus of $2.8 billion which the BC NDP will inherit.

In a release Tuesday, the BC NDP say the surplus is applied to provincial operating debt.

“The operating surplus results show a $3.4-billion increase in revenue over the forecast and total expenses $1.3 billion higher than budgeted. Following the requirements of the Budget Transparency and Accountability Act, the surplus is applied to the provincial operating debt.”

James says the accounts also show a $591-million increase in overall debt. The increase comes from a $1.2-billion decrease in taxpayer-supported debt offset by an increase of $1.8 billion in self-supported debt.

The Minister says a updated financial budget will be released on September 11.

“B.C.’s economy is strong because of the hard work of British Columbians. It is long past time for the citizens of B.C. to share in the benefits of the strong economy they have helped create. The provincial budget update presented on September 11 will demonstrate our commitment to maintaining strong economic growth, while making key, targeted investments to begin to increase affordability and supports for services that people count on most.”

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