Green party proposes inclusive vision for Island economy

5 April 2019

For immediate release

The Green Party of PEI is putting forward an inclusive vision for the Island’s economy by supporting small and local businesses and community organizations.

A Green government would establish an independently managed $2M micro-loan program to support entrepreneurs and businesses. Unsecured micro-loans ranging from $500 to $5,000 would offer a unique way of helping those who might not need or qualify for a conventional loan.

“Our party believes that every Islander should have the opportunity to succeed,” said Green Party leader Peter Bevan Baker. “We are happy to provide new and existing entrepreneurs, skilled workers, and newcomers with the support they need to establish themselves in our Island community.”

The Green Party also recognizes the value of the nonprofit sector to Islanders.

“Nonprofit organizations in PEI play a critical role in providing social services to Islanders that are otherwise not provided by government or the private sector,” said Bevan-Baker. “Yet despite their important economic and social benefits, the sector is often excluded from economic development and planning discussions.”

A Green government would spend $2.5 million in 2019/2020, and up to $3.5 million in 2020/2021, to provide consistent and sufficient core operational funding to allow these organizations to focus on their mandate. It would additionally spend $500,000 annually to fund the Community Sector Network and establish a community sector secretariat as a single point of contact for organizations and government.

Other economic development commitments by the Green Party include:

  • Raising the minimum wage in predictable and consistent increments to $15 per hour by 2023;
  • Relaunching the Charlottetown Area Development Corporation and Summerside Regional Development Corporation with a strong, independent board and new mandate;
  • Negotiating a new agreement on rural broadband that includes local service providers and is focused on increasing quality and decreasing prices for Islanders;
  • Expanding tourism marketing using local creative talent and resources;
  • Supporting active experiential tourism infrastructure and Indigenous tourism development in consultation with Indigenous communities; and,
  • Reducing the small business tax rate by 0.5%.

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