When we say “find a better way,” that’s not to suggest that there was
agreement on what that “better way” would be. In fact, of all the issues involved in Equalization, the treatment of resource revenues is the most controversial. Opinions ranged from 100 percent inclusion of resource
revenues in the formula to complete exclusion. In the words of Thomas Courchene, treatment of resource revenues is “a theoretical and empirical minefield,” an issue that “one copes with rather than solves.”13 From an
academic perspective, concerns were expressed about the current RTS approach to measuring resource revenues, the increasing complexity this causes, and the challenges involved in getting accurate data. Alternative suggestions included developing new measures of economic rent, introducing macro measures as a proxy for resource revenues, or measuring only actual revenues collected and used by provinces to support public services.