Earlier this week, in his bid to ante up the pressure on the province of Newfoundland and Labrador to change the way in which it provides municipalities with funds, St. John’s Mayor Dennis O’Keefe said that property taxes in his city could jump by as much as 300 percent. Finance Minister Tom Marshall doubts that. “I’ve taken a look at the city’s revenues and I really can’t see that happening,” said Marshall to the CBC. The city is arguing that the provincial government doesn’t currently pay its share of key municipal services, including water and other infrastructure. “I think it’s a bit extreme but [O’Keefe’s] got a point to make. He’s trying to make an argument and he’ll make his and we’ll make ours and you know, we’ll work together, but we have to look at the big picture. We have the whole province to look after.” Marshall told the CBC that the government is heading into its pre-budget consultations with a projected deficit of almost $500 million for the 2012-2013 fiscal year.