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Provincial debt jumps $4B

Finance Minister Mike de Jong says British Columbia's budget posted a surplus that is $200 million higher than forecast but the provincial debt has jumped by $4 billion.

De Jong says the final public accounts numbers, which confirm the government's year-end finances, show a budget surplus of $353 million.

He says government revenues were down $511 million from the forecast in a June 2013 budget update following the spring election.

But de Jong says government spending was down by $561 million from the same forecast.

He says a $4-billion increase in the province's debt now brings the total to $60.8 billion.

De Jong says that on average, salaries for senior public-sector executives were down by one per cent while the number of executives receiving bonuses or incentive pay decreased by six per cent.

The Canadian Press

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