COMPAS Poll/Survey
July 4, 2006

Solving the "Fiscal Imbalance" - Good Idea Fraught with Inherent Conflict over the Details and a Risk of Harming the Economy; Newfoundland’s Position on Resource Income Repudiated

  A Weekly BDO Dunwoody CEO Business Leader Poll by COMPAS in the Financial Post
Policy and Opinion
Business and Finance

The COMPAS CEO panel was consulted on federal-provincial financial arrangements during a period in which inter-governmental discussions have been heating up.

CEOs and business leaders on the panel believe that stable agreement is inherently difficult to achieve.

They see the devil as being in the details. On the one hand, a majority rejects the idea that transfer should only be to individuals and not governments while a plurality believes transfer agreements to be an essential part of the Canada’s national character.
On the other hand, pluralities perceive some negative aspects of transfer agreements:

  • poor people in rich provinces may indirectly subsidize rich people in poor provinces,

  • the flow of intergovernmental money reduces the authority of voters in have-not provinces over the policy decisions of their governments, and

  • Ontario carries an unreasonable burden because transfer formulas ignore the higher costs of providing services in Ontario than elsewhere (a position articulated by AIMS, the Atlantic Institute for Market Studies).

These are the key findings from the current web-survey of the COMPAS panel of CEOs and business leaders undertaken for the Financial Post under sponsorship of BDO Dunwoody LLP. Despite the Newfoundland Premier’s strong opposition, panelists believe that the value of resource income should be factored into calculations.

View / Download complete poll in PDF Click here to download this survey as a PDF