Alberts needs to reverse its income tax hike

Alberts needs to reverse its income tax hikeThe last thing Albertans need right now is a provincial government reaching further into our pockets with higher income taxes. But higher income taxes are exactly what Albertans are getting in 2021, courtesy of Premier Jason Kenney’s sneaky backdoor tax grab known as bracket creep. Bracket creep happens when governments stop indexing tax brackets with…

Trudeau’s litany of broken promises, and higher carbon taxes

Trudeau told us he wouldn’t be increasing taxes. He lied

Trudeau’s litany of broken promises, and higher carbon taxesBy Aaron Wudrick Federal Director and Franco Terrazzano Alberta Director Canadian Taxpayers Federation Happy New Year taxpayers! Well, maybe not so happy after all. Courtesy of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, you can now expect higher home heating bills and gas prices. The Trudeau government recently rolled out new plans to massively increase the carbon tax…

Alberta’s politicians need to take a pay cut

Alberta’s politicians need to take a pay cutOur politicians are asking Albertans to make massive sacrifices, but most don’t seem willing to make the same sacrifice. Premier Jason Kenney recently announced that Alberta will be heading into its second lockdown and specifically spoke to those it would hit hardest. “I know how devastating today’s announcement and these measures are for tens of…

The Alberta government is not taking too little from taxpayers

It’s time for Alberta’s politicians to start living within taxpayers’ means.

The Alberta government is not taking too little from taxpayersAlbertans have many legitimate beefs with their governments. They have municipal employees having pension parties on their dime. They have a federal government that is getting ready to hammer us with its second carbon tax. And they “have the most inefficient provincial government in Canada by a country mile,” to quote Premier Jason Kenney. But…

More UCP MLAs need to speak out against a PST

Finance Minister Travis Toews may hit Albertans with a PST once the pandemic settles

More UCP MLAs need to speak out against a PSTAlbertans didn’t elect the United Conservatives so they could have their turn reaching deeper into our pockets and UCP MLAs need to remind Finance Minister Travis Toews of that fact because he keeps flirting with the idea of a provincial sales tax. “The timing is the question here,” said Toews on Nov. 13, referencing a…

Alberta sales tax a bad bet to balance the books

For politicians, spending expands to meet any additional revenue, so a sales tax would only increase spending, not reduce the deficit

Alberta sales tax a bad bet to balance the booksAlberta’s finances are a mess. By the end of the year, Alberta will have the largest deficit in the province’s history coupled with a $100-billion debt tab. Almost like clockwork, some academics are recommending a provincial sales tax to pull the government out of its sea of red ink. But the pseudo sales tax solution…

Trudeau’s second carbon tax coming at worst possible time

Trudeau needs to go back to drawing board and come up with an environmental plan that doesn’t hammer taxpayers

Trudeau’s second carbon tax coming at worst possible timeBy Aaron Wudrick and Franco Terrazzano Canadian Taxpayers Federation Whenever Prime Minister Justin Trudeau wants to solve a problem, his solution can’t be to hit families and businesses struggling to get by with even more costs. Yet, that’s exactly the approach Trudeau is taking with his second carbon tax. As Postmedia columnist John Ivison reported,…

Cities’ push for new taxes divorced from reality

Alberta’s cities need to first tackle the cost elephant in the room: labour

Cities’ push for new taxes divorced from realityWe hear councillors offer nice platitudes about understanding the hardships Albertans are going through, but actions speak louder than words. And the recent push for new tax powers shows that big city councillors and mayors are divorced from the reality facing Alberta. In June, Red Deer council voted unanimously to back an Edmonton resolution calling…

Alberta desperately needs to reduce its labour costs

Alberta desperately needs to reduce its labour costsAt the end of August Finance Minister Travis Toews released his budget update, which was 20 pages doused from top to bottom in red ink. Albertans couldn’t afford our high-cost provincial government before the pandemic. And Toews’ budget update shows we definitely can’t afford our high-cost provincial government now. At $24 billion, this year’s deficit…

Alberta needs to take tax hikes off the table

Alberta needs to take tax hikes off the tableHere’s one thing Premier Jason Kenney and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau can agree on: hiking taxes would be a bad idea. “I cannot imagine a dumber thing to do in the midst of a time of economic fragility, an oil price collapse and a global recession than to add a multi-billion dollar tax on the…

Equalization rebate should go to Albertans, not the Alberta government

If the feds send the larger equalization rebate to Alberta, then it should be made out to the taxpayers who have been paying the bills

Equalization rebate should go to Albertans, not the Alberta governmentHere’s a fundamental point about equalization: the provincial government doesn’t pay for equalization, taxpayers do. Premier Jason Kenney is calling on the feds to increase the equalization rebate to the Alberta government to offset some of the impacts of the downturn. But any equalization rebate should go back to the Albertans who have been paying…

Alberta government flip-flops on corporate welfare

It’s time for the UCP to drop its newfound interest in picking winners and losers

Alberta government flip-flops on corporate welfareIt’s a sad day for taxpayers when their government that has “committed to being responsible stewards of taxpayers’ hard-earned money” starts bragging about its corporate welfare spending. Premier Jason Kenney should immediately scrap the new business subsidy programs his government just announced and go back to focusing on cutting taxes for everyone rather than picking…

Alberta is right to expand its employee sunshine list

The single biggest day-to-day expense for the Alberta government is labour costs

Alberta is right to expand its employee sunshine listThe single biggest day-to-day expense for the Alberta government is labour costs. And with taxpayers footing the bill, we deserve to know just how much we are paying for all government employees with six-figure salaries. While Alberta’s sunshine list discloses the salaries and benefits of bureaucrats making more than $111,000 per year and employees of…

Alberta can reduce income taxes by cutting government labour costs

Tying income tax relief with savings from bringing government compensation in line with costs in other provinces will help put Alberta back on its feet

Alberta can reduce income taxes by cutting government labour costsFor Alberta to get back on its feet, it’ll take thousands of little things like families going out for pizza and restaurants rehiring servers to bring out those pizzas. The best thing Alberta Premier Jason Kenney can do to help those families do those little things is to lighten their tax burdens. And the premier…

Alberta municipal gov’t labour costs out of touch with reality

Alberta municipal gov’t labour costs out of touch with realityStruggling families and businesses can’t afford to pay big property tax bills to fund bloated municipal governments. Alberta municipalities need to reduce that burden by addressing the cost elephant in the room: labour. For many Albertans working outside of government, the last five years have been nothing short of a nightmare full of job losses,…

Albertans need municipal governments to stop overspending

Families and businesses have been tightening their belts for years. It’s time for Alberta’s municipal governments to get with the program

Albertans need municipal governments to stop overspendingAlberta families and businesses have been tightening their belts for years and now it’s time for big spending municipal governments to follow that example. There’s lots of room for Alberta municipalities to save a lot of money. “Municipalities have experienced significant revenue growth of 48 per cent per person [between 2007 and 2017],” explained the…

Corporate welfare no way to help the economy

Corporate welfare no way to help the economyBusinesses need help, but it’s important to provide the right help the right way. Premier Jason Kenney’s economic strategy has so far revolved around three core principles: lowering taxes, cutting red tape and pushing back against Ottawa. Kenney should double down on these principles to help Alberta recover and stay away from corporate welfare. “The…

Albertans still waiting for recall, referendum rules

Kenney should fulfil his campaign promise, committing to a culture change and reaffirming the role of citizens as boss

Albertans still waiting for recall, referendum rulesMore than a year into the United Conservative Party’s mandate, Albertans are still waiting for two key accountability reforms: recall and referendum rules. If government belongs to the people, then the people should be able to vote to recall misbehaving politicians between elections and initiate referendums to introduce or repeal legislation. Premier Jason Kenney can…

UCP shouldn’t take handouts from struggling taxpayers

Federal wage subsidy should go to struggling Albertans, not to a political party with plenty of money in the bank

UCP shouldn’t take handouts from struggling taxpayersThe United Conservative Party said it would stick up for taxpayers, but now the UCP is exploiting the federal wage subsidy and taking money meant for struggling Albertans. The federal government’s Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy provides employers affected by COVID-19 with a 75 per cent wage subsidy. The intent of the program wasn’t to force Canadians to subsidize…

Alberta spending restraint must start with MLAs

Unfortunately, the UCP’s rhetoric has been on-point but its bite hasn’t matched its bark

Alberta spending restraint must start with MLAsAlberta Premier Jason Kenney will need to make tough decisions to keep the government’s leaking fiscal ship afloat. But before Kenney can sell necessary spending cuts, he will need to show the public that his United Conservative Party politicians and staff have done all they can to trim their own expenses. So far, the UCP…

Ottawa’s carbon tax hike out of step with global reality

Ottawa’s carbon tax hike out of step with global realityBy Aaron Wudrick and Franco Terrazzano Canadian Taxpayers Federation Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has chosen to make life more expensive for Canadians by increasing the federal carbon tax by 50 per cent amidst the COVID-19 economic and health crisis. Meanwhile, governments around the world are moving in the opposite direction because hiking taxes during a…

Struggling Albertans can’t afford a sales tax

It’s telling that the people pushing for a PST never talk about looking Albertans in the eye and asking for permission

Struggling Albertans can’t afford a sales taxEvery single time Alberta faces a financial challenge, some academics recommend the same pseudo-solution: a provincial sales tax. They seem blissfully unaware that governments are struggling because Albertans are struggling and a PST will make hard times even harder. Here’s proof of that disconnect: these academics always demand a provincial sales tax (PST) but never…

Alberta’s politicians need to help shoulder the burden

It’s time for politicians to show solidarity with Albertans and make the tough, but right, decision to reduce their own pay

Alberta’s politicians need to help shoulder the burdenThere’s no doubt elected officials are working hard to manage the COVID-19 crisis, but with many businesses closing their doors and families worrying about their next grocery bill, politicians need to show solidarity with the people they represent and reduce their own pay. Between the coronavirus health pandemic, the global economic shutdown and the collapsing…