BC Southern Interior Alex Atamanenko wants Kootenay residents to pay close attention to the federal budget process.

Kootenay residents urged to be part of budget process

The local MP is asking residents of the region to put some thought into how they want their tax dollars to be spent.

The local MP is asking residents of the region to put some thought into how they want their tax dollars to be spent.

The Federal Finance Committee’s pre-budget consultation process is now underway and BC Southern Interior MP Alex Atamanenko said it is open to all and provides a good opportunity for Canadians to contribute their thoughts and suggestions on how federal tax revenue is spent.

“I would like to urge individuals and organizations in the BC Southern Interior to use this process to share their ideas with the committee,” said Atamanenko, who is part of the NDP caucus in Ottawa. Atamanenko added that subsequent pre-budget hearings are to be announced in the fall that will focus on six specific themes: fiscal sustainability and economic growth, vulnerable Canadians, research and innovation, rural and urban communities, government efficiency and maximizing employment opportunities.

Federal NDP finance critic Peggy Nash is part of the committee and is urging Atamanenko’s constituents to take part in helping plan the 2014 federal budget.

“We always receive a wide range of innovative ideas and I know that I speak on behalf of all committee members in saying that we are looking forward to the submissions this year,” Nash stated in a press release.

The online portal for the current consultation will be open until August 5 at: parl.gc.ca/FINA/PBC2013. Those who cannot access the internet can request assistance by contacting the clerk of the committee at 613-992-9753.