Opinions

NDP increasing taxes, decreasing hope

The Pipestone Flyer - File photo
The Pipestone Flyer
— image credit: File photo

Dear editor,

Have you been paying attention to what Rachel Notley and her motley crew have been up to since they were elected? As you know they are socialists so their agenda is all about high taxes, big government and low-growth policies. Before I talk about the carbon tax I just want to remind you of some of the high points of the NDP government:

They have run up the largest deficit - $10.9 billion dollars, or $2,600 for every man, woman and child in Alberta, and they are promising to make this even larger.

They attacked Alberta’s family farmers and ranchers and eroded their property rights, and increased their operating expenses by more than 10 per cent.

They introduced higher taxes for businesses and more red tape that’s costing Alberta jobs.

One-hundred thousand Albertans have lost their jobs; however the number of public services employees has increased by 15,000 since Notley was elected.

They capped the cost of post-secondary tuition and then proceeded to give universities and colleges $32 million of our tax dollars because in reality education is not “free,” it costs money to heat and maintain buildings and pay professors. Ask yourself this question, why is an Albertan taxpayer subsiding a foreign student, whose parents have not contributed one dime to the Canadian economy?

And now they have implemented a multi-billion-dollar carbon tax that will dramatically increase the cost of everything, including electricity, groceries and gasoline. In Ontario their electricity costs went up by 120 per cent.

The Notley government spent about $5 million of our tax dollars to buy TV advertising and other types of propaganda to inform Albertans that she would be increasing our tax burden and that we should be grateful. In reality officials within the provincial finance department warned the Notley government that its carbon tax would cost 15,000 jobs and lower Alberta families’ incomes by $4 billion.

If the government leaves money in Albertan’s pockets that is neither revenue nor expenditure. Once it taxes that money, it becomes government revenue even if the government chooses to rebate most of it. There is a huge bureaucratic cost to administering any rebate program. Such costs do not arise if money is left untaxed.

Carbon pricing programs like the one implemented by Rachel Notley will add a new cost for Canadians businesses, a cost that all but a handful of American states don’t pay. The result is that Notley is pledging billions of our tax dollars to major industrial greenhouse gas emitters to entice them to stay in Canada rather than move to jurisdictions that don’t have carbon pricing. These subsidies will be paid in the form of higher taxes and retail prices on virtually all goods and services, since essentially all require the use of fossil fuel energy.

The Notley government announced that it will pay $1.2 billion dollars, plus interest over the next few years, as compensation for prematurely shutting down coal fired plants. This amount is going to be much higher once they factor in Enmax and Epcor. So all Albertans are going to pay additional taxes to help put Albertans out of work, currently these are people who are earning decent wages and are actually contributing to the economy.

The tragedy of all this is that these new taxes will inflict a great deal of economic pain and Rachel Notley’s government will have no proof it will produce any environmental benefits. At the end of the day it will prove to be what it really is a large money grab by a socialist government.

Marcia Stymiest

Mulhurst Bay

 

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