Volume 92, Issue 81

Wednesday, March 3, 1999


Four-year BA gets the nod from Senate

Another stabbing punctures downtown

Early exit for Harrison

Argument consumes faculty meeting

Martin's budget includes students

Tan plans for future presidential position


No vacation from campus

Caught on campus

Caught on campus too

Caught on campus again

Martin's budget includes students

By Mark Brown
Gazette Staff

With the help of three local members of parliament, Finance Minister Paul Martin defended his health care budget last week, which has been widely criticized by student lobby groups as ignoring education.

Martin, who was in downtown London Tuesday for a rare post budgetary stop, told reporters the budget will have a positive impact on education in Canada. "If you look at this budget we are far from ignoring education."

Pat O'Brian, MP from London-Fanshawe, said while education is a provincial matter, O'Brian said this budget will help in the reinvestment of faculty at Western. "I think the minister's budget shows the importance of education as a life-long learning process."

Most of the money put out by the Medical Research Council, which was funded in this year's budget, is going to graduates and researchers, Martin said. "There is an enormous amount of post graduate research, post graduate funding, which is directly educational. Essentially what we are doing with that is getting twice the bang for the buck."

However, Hoops Harrison, national director of the Canadian Alliance of Student Associations, said even the federal government's focus groups believed education was lacking in this year's budget.

Nick Iozzo, VP-education for the University Students' Council, argued the money going to graduate students and research projects will not solve larger problems facing universities. "When the buildings [students] are working in are falling apart, how are students going to get a quality education?"

Issues affecting the quality of education can only be addressed through transfer payments, he added.

While Martin would not detail when students could expect an increase for education in the Canadian Health and Social Transfer, he said the goal of the federal government is to make sure education is accessible, which is what was done in the last budget, Martin said.

"Essentially what we did in the last budget, as opposed to dealing with specific transfers, we wanted to deal directly with the problems the students have and to see how much money we could get into their pockets."

Harrison said CASA's attention will now have to turn to the provinces since some of the increases to transfers, although earmarked for health care, can still be diverted towards education.

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Copyright The Gazette 1999