BC Taxes Will INCREASE in February Budget

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.

Harv Oberfeld

(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.)

Posted in British Columbia | 12 Comments

BC Green Platform: the Hate On for Cars Escalates

If you drive a car … or enjoy rides with friends or family who do … you should read the BC Greens’ Election Platform if you’re even thinking of voting for them.

The Greens will not form government after the Oct 24 election: BUT the influence, demands their latest extreme anti-car agenda could have in a minority government situation could hurt you badly.

“Stop fossil fuel subsidies and transition our economy” is one of the TOP Five priorities listed by Green Leader Sonia Furstenau Friday.

Sounds quite innocent … until you realize what it would mean … and read the Greens FULL platform: https://www.bcgreens.ca/platform?utm_campaign=201014_platform&utm_medium=email&utm_source=greenpartybc

Here are a few tidbits:

“If there is an upside to COVID, it is that we have developed a greater connection to our communities as we explored our communities on foot or by bicycle. We started to appreciate streets free of traffic congestion, and less time wasted sitting in traffic jams. Many of us are not in a hurry to return to the stress of the morning commute, the noise and the air pollution – not to mention the Greenhouse gas emissions!

” Getting around on foot or by bicycle or public transport enhances our sense of place, increases our connection to the community, and makes a positive contribution to our health and wellbeing as well as the environment,” the platform states.

And then comes the Greens’ solution:

” As BC turns its attention to economic recovery, we have a unique opportunity to hold on to some of these changes that have improved our quality of life, and helped build more resiliency into our communities. While local governments have shown leadership on this front, what has been missing is a provincial partner that tirelessly pursues the vision of enhancing the livability and sustainability of our cities.

“There are many things we can do, in partnership with local governments, to make our cities more attractive and inclusive places to live, work and play.”

The unspoken agenda: further restrict, punish and penalize those who drive cars!

Don’t see that yet?

Well, here’s some more … direct from the Greens platform:

“We would expand provincial funding for sustainable projects such as bike lanes, paths, parks, community spaces, and pedestrian-only streets.”

MORE bike lanes and MORE streets closed to vehicles.

Sure, that’s great if you work at home, live close to work, shop only close to home or are unemployed … but let’s keep it real: MANY, MANY people still need vehicles to get to their jobs, connect with their families, move goods and, may I dare say, even enjoy getting out for drives in and around their communities, their cities, their province.

ANYONE in those groups who vote Green could pay a very painful and heavy price down the road … literally!

If you think gas taxes, permit fees, parking rates/taxes are high enough, or higher than they should be … imagine what the Greens, with ANY power, would do with the power to push for new punishing vehicle and gas taxes, road usage metering or bridge tolling!

In fact, they lay out THEIR plan quite clearly in their platform, which I doubt most voters or the media have even read! But you really should if you’re even thinking of voting Green.

“Before COVID-19, we saw public transit ridership growing at significant rates, as many residents chose transit over a single-occupancy vehicle. COVID has dealt a temporary, but significant blow to the finances of our transit agencies. We cannot let our transit infrastructure be compromised by the pandemic – instead we need to double down on these investments,” the Greens say.

In fact, during the Leaders’ Debate, although no one seemed to notice, Furstenau was quite clear:

“We need to be making long-term decisions that get us to a place of resiliency that recognizes we have to have ways of getting people around mobility that doesn’t rely on single passenger vehicles,” the Green Leader said.

Ready to ride the bus to work or visit or shop?

They are NOT kidding:

“Investing in transit, livable cities and active transportation will not only help us meet our climate targets – it will improve our physical and mental wellbeing, the strength and connectedness of our communities, and our overall quality of life,” the Green platform adds.

Notice there is not a single word about recognizing, appreciating the necessity of personal cars or commercial vehicles by anyone to get around at all.

It would be the Stanley Park anti-car hate campaign taken province-wide!

As I have stated before, there WAS a time when I voted Green.

But the Greens today, having tasted a LITTLE power, have become extreme: it’s their way or the highway … or I should say almost NO highway! No more spending on improved roadways to ease car or truck movements and, very probably, huge increases in costs for those who dare to continue to use private vehicles.

Might sound great to those who don’t have vehicles or depend on relatives and friends to drive them around. |

However, think of how much the Green plan … of increased driving restrictions, higher costs, persecution of those with private vehicles … will add to the cost of just getting you to work or your groceries or anything else you buy to store shelves if the Greens win enough seats to exercise any power with their anti-vehicle hate.

You could pay a heavy cost for the Green agenda … even if you don’t drive.

So, as the old expression goes, be very careful what you vote for, because you might just get it by voting Green … and then suffer for it down the road.

Harv Oberfeld

(Reminder: You can get First Alerts to all new topics on this BC-based Blog by following @harveyoberfeld on Twitter.)

Posted in British Columbia, Media | 8 Comments