NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh rises during question period in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Thursday, April 29, 2021. Parliament’s budget watchdog says the NDP plan to cut student debt would cost about $4 billion.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick

NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh rises during question period in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Thursday, April 29, 2021. Parliament’s budget watchdog says the NDP plan to cut student debt would cost about $4 billion.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick

PBO report finds that NDP plan to slash student debt would cost $4 billion

Budget watchdog calculates cost tied to NDP plan announced in March

Parliament’s budget watchdog says the NDP plan to cut student debt would cost about $4 billion.

The New Democrats’ campaign-style pledge this spring promised to cancel up to $20,000 in tuition, freeze loan payments through July 2022 and scrap interest payments, among other measures.

In a report released today, parliamentary budget officer Yves Giroux says the proposal would amount to $3.95 billion over five years, with the reduction of as much as $20,000 per student borrower by far the priciest plank.

Giroux also calculates that the plan’s extension of the non-repayment period from six months after graduation to five years would actually cut more than $400 million in upfront government costs.

The announcement of the NDP plan in March came ahead of a possible election this year as federal parties prepare to battle it out for the hearts and ballots of young voters.

Statistics Canada found last fall that more than 60 per cent of post-secondary students were concerned about using up their savings and taking on more debt.

— The Canadian Press

Related: Budget’s foreign-homebuyers tax could bring in $509 million over 4 years, PBO says

Related: Excess profits tax would reap $8 billion for government, budget watchdog says

Just Posted

Students in the Grade 10 entrepreneurship program at Summerland Unisus School have completed a cookbook with international recipes. (Contributed)
Summerland students create virtual international cookbook

Entrepreneurship program at Summerland Unisus School uses virtual cookbook as fundraiser

Keremeos’ heritage Grist Mill and Gardens. (Brennan Phillips - Keremeos Review)
Keremeos Grist Mill looking forward to restrictions easing with exclusive concert planned

Juno Award-winning folk artist Valdy is set to take the stage

A boat sharing service is extending to Summerland. The company, Penticton Boat Club and Rentals, is also taking over the boat rentals at Summerland Waterfront Resort. (Photo by Chris Stenberg)
Boat sharing service extended from Penticton to Summerland

Company will also operate boat rentals at Summerland Waterfront Resort

The weekly COVID-19 map for June 6 to 12. (BC CDC)
South Okanagan sees only 5 new cases in last week

The Similkameen Valley went a second week without any new cases

Bear wanders Kelowna on June 15. (Michelle Wallace/Facebook)
Bear climbs fence, uses crosswalk in Kelowna

The bear was spotted on Baron Road Wednesday evening

This photo of the small wildfire burning above Naramata was taken at 8 p.m. on Thursday, June 17, 2021 (Monique Tamminga Western News)
BC Wildfire on scene of small wildfire above Naramata

Smoke has been showing since earlier in the day

Hundreds of people, young and old, joined the three-day Walking Our Spirits Home procession, honouring residential school survivors, those who never made it home and all those affected by the institutions. Here people walk the third portion on June 13. (Martha Wickett - Salmon Arm Observer)
Walking Our Spirits Home from Kamloops provides path to healing

First Nations in and beyond Secwépemc territory join in to honour residential school survivors

More flames
Lake Country home destroyed in large blaze, 11 dogs rescued

Fire crews are responding to 10839 Hallam Drive

(Facebook/Kelowna Cabs)
Kelowna Cabs reaches tentative agreement with dispatchers union

The tentative agreement could help end the dispute between the taxi company and the dispatchers

FILE – A science class at L.A. Matheson Secondary in Surrey, B.C. on March 12, 2021. (Lauren Collins/Surrey Now Leader)
Teachers’ union wants more COVID transmission data as B.C. prepares for back-to-school

BCTF says that details will be important as province works on plan for September

201 First Street West 1980s. Prior revitalization. (Photo from Revelstoke Museum and Archives)
Man who redesigned downtown Revelstoke honoured with lifetime achievement award

Robert Inwood has worked on historical projects across the province

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry outlines B.C.’s COVID-19 restart plan, May 25, 2021, including larger gatherings and a possible easing of mandatory masks on July 1. (B.C. government photo)
B.C. records 120 new COVID-19 cases, second vaccines accelerating

Lower Pfizer deliveries for early July, Moderna shipments up

A heart of ribbons is seen on the fence of Highroad Academy along Chilliwack Central Road on Friday, June 4, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
Orange Heart Memorial campaign launches in Vernon on National Indigenous Peoples Day

North Okanagan Friendship Center raising funds for bench, mural memorializing 215 discovered in Kamloops

Most Read