Economic growth has been considerably weaker than expected.
This year, the province's debt will reach a projected $36.6 billion.
Next year Alberta is expected to surpass B.C. in per-person debt.
Sixty-five per cent of respondents for Alberta were deterred by the high cost of regulatory compliance.
Premier Ralph Klein’s government reduced program spending by 21.6 per cent over three years.
The budget includes a 1.6 per cent nominal spending reduction over four years.
Last year, the province ran a $6.7 billion operating deficit.
To eliminate the deficit, the government’s four-year plan will cut program spending by 1.6 per cent over four years.
Premier Ford’s first budget called for continued nominal spending growth.