Hon. Kevin Sorenson, M.P., (Battle River-Crowfoot)
Exactly one year ago, the Liberal Government released a technical paper on their plan to impose a federal carbon tax on provinces and territories that do not implement their own “satisfactory” systems by 2018. The Saskatchewan Government is challenging in court the constitutional power of Ottawa to do so. If Conservative governments are elected in Ontario on June 7th and in Alberta next Spring, Saskatchewan will have some reinforcements as both provincial Conservative Leaders say they will seek intervener status in the case.
The constitutionality of the imposition of the carbon tax on the provinces is not the only question that remains unanswered. Neither the technical paper nor Budget 2018 revealed exactly how much the carbon tax will cost the average Canadian family. What we do know, from the Liberals own admission, is it will add 11 cents per litre to the price of gasoline and the cost of heating one’s home will increase by over $200 annually.
The Parliamentary Budget Officer released a new report which found that carbon tax will take $10 billion out of the Canadian economy by 2022, while other estimates argue the cost could be as much as $35 billion per year. The Canadian Taxpayers Federation predicts the carbon tax will cost $2500 per family while Trevor Tombe at the University of Calgary estimates $1100. None of these numbers can be verified because unfortunately, the Government continues to refuse to tell Canadians exactly how much the carbon tax will cost them.
Recently, Conservatives called on the Liberals to release all documents, in their original and uncensored form, that indicate how much the federal carbon tax proposed in Budget 2018 will cost Canadian families, in order to put an end to the carbon tax cover-up. This request came in the form of a Motion in the House of Commons; a Motion the Liberals voted against. This was a Motion that came after multiple requests for information filed with the government resulted in the release of documents that had key information blacked out.
Despite claims that they will provide a cost analysis in the Fall, the Liberals are now demanding that Parliament approve the carbon tax in Budget 2018 before Canadians know what the costly impact will be on their wallets. Canadians deserve to know how much this will cost and the Conservative Opposition will therefore vote against it.
We will continue to fight for your right to know. We will continue to fight for lower taxes and we will continue to fight to improve Canada’s competitive advantage by trying to kill the carbon tax on provinces and territories.
Canadian businesses are about to face major competitive challenges, as the United States moves forward with their plan to reduce regulation, lower taxes, and invest in coal fired electricity to reduce energy costs. The US changes coupled with the uncertainty over the impact of the Liberal’s national climate change plan on the economy is causing our businesses to stand on the sidelines and wait, discouraging investment and hurting the economy. We cannot and will not stand quietly by and watch this happen.
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