The Canadian Taxpayers Federation (CTF) is calling on the federal government to end its tax-on-tax policies in a move it says would save Canadians a billion dollars a year by the end of the decade.
It comes after the Parliamentary Budget Office (PBO) reported on Tuesday that removing the GST paid on the carbon tax — at the gas pump for instance — would save Canadians $486 million in 2024, increasing to more than $1 billion by 2030.
“Given that the carbon price embedded in non-energy goods and services is not directly observable, there is uncertainty related to the feasibility of removing the GST related to the indirect costs of federal and provincial-territorial carbon pricing,” it said in the report.
In it, the PBO analyzed the cost of private member’s Bill C-358 which was introduced by the Conservative MP for Bruce-Grey-Owen Sound Alex Ruff to amend the Excise Tax Act on carbon pollution pricing.
Gasoline prices are the most obvious example because the GST is applied after all per-litre taxes, including provincial gas taxes, are added. It comes as the federal government moves to increase the carbon tax to 17 cents per litre of gasoline and 21 cents for diesel effective April 1.
The exact amounts vary by region, which includes $187 billion in Alberta by 2030 — up from $96 billion in the present fiscal year.
The carbon tax costs the average family up to $710 this year even after rebates, according to a separate PBO report.
Canadian Taxpayers Federation
The CTF said its time for the Liberal government to finally admit what most Canadians have been experiencing in terms of inflation.
And a good place to start is at its caucus retreat in Montreal this week, said CTF Federal Director Franco Terrazzano.
“Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his ministers are having a retreat in Montreal trying to figure out how to make life more affordable. Here’s an idea: they could save Canadians real money right now by picking up the PBO report and ending their tax-on-tax,” he said.
In addition to gasoline taxes, the carbon tax is being increased to 15 cents per cubic metre of natural gas even as the charge on fuel oil is being removed. That affects Alberta and Saskatchewan which rely on gas for home heating the most.
“Ending the tax-on-tax would save Canadians every time they fuel up to go to work and heat their homes during the cold winter months,” Terrazzano said. “Trudeau can and should make life more affordable by ending the tax-on-tax and scrapping his carbon tax.”