Premier John Horgan wouldn’t be nailed down.
As valiantly as CKNW talk show host Mike Smyth tried Tuesday, the NDP Leader slipped and slid around … refusing to commit to voters that a re-elected NDP government will NOT raise taxes.
Not that Horgan’s word could be counted on anyway: remember that legislation that supposedly set BC’s FIXED 2021 Election Date; or recall that signed formal support agreement with the BC Greens to avoid an early election call?
At least this time, Horgan didn’t outright lie … like other past politicians have, with their with a “Read my lips” or “There will be NO HST in BC” infamous quotes … and then doing both!
Horgan would only say, over and over again, he has “no intention” of raising existing taxes or introducing new ones and the NDP has “no plans” to raise existing taxes or introduce new ones. (Except for the already scheduled boost in carbon taxes to $50/ton, part of the NDP plan to reach net zero carbon emissions by 2050). ).
No taxpayer could or should try to take Horgan’s (or any politician’s “no intention” or “no plans”) commitment to the bank as proof your cost of living will not soon be going up! They’ll laugh you out the door.
Especially when he added that we are, after all, “in a pandemic” … a veiled reminder therefore that anything could change. (You can listen to the full Horgan interview on the CKNW website (https://globalnews.ca/radio/cknw/?gref=cknw ) … using the Audio Vault, Oct 20 at 9 a.m.
Horgan’s words are, I believe, a strong indication that some current taxes/fees/charges WILL indeed be going up if the NDP is re-elected and introduces its 2021-2022 Budget, probably in February.
And watch for NEW taxes too … possibly on inheritances, on homes valued above a certain threshold and road tolling in the Lower Mainland and maybe even substantive vehicle use in other communities.
A major Liberal promise, meanwhile, is to cancel the Provincial Sales Tax for one year and then reintroduce it at only three per cent the following year.
They say they would also scrap the property speculation tax and vacant home/condo tax … and cut business taxes etc.
BUT then they say they will “review all provincial taxes” after the election.
That’s where YOU come in! No doubt, to pay for all their promises too.
What makes these latest indications of MORE and HIGHER taxes to come all the more appalling is the fact that, on average, British Columbians are already milked by governments for more than half of our annual incomes in federal, provincial and municipal taxes.
Tax Freedom Day in BC, according to the Fraser Institute, is currently June 10. (Nationally it’s June 14; Alberta May 27; Ontario June 11; Quebec June 28). More comparisons here: https://www.fraserinstitute.org/sites/default/files/tax-freedom-day-2019-newsrelease.pdf.
And yet, there are promises, promises, promises … costing BILLIONS of dollars MORE.
And the voters are BUYING it all … literally!
So enjoy Election night, the ballot counting two weeks afterwards, the outcome and then Christmas and New Year 2020.
Knowing full well that YOU will get the bills, starting in 2021.
(Reminder: Follow me @harveyoberfeld.ca on Twitter for First Alerts of new postings on this BC-based Blog. No spam, just alerts to new topics up for discussion.)