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Pallister PCs’ Quarter Billion Dollar Tax Grab Must Be Deferred

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THURSDAY, AUGUST 30, 2018 ‒ WINNIPEG ‒ The Pallister PCs’ quarter billion dollar a year carbon tax that the provincial government announced in its 2018/19 budget cannot take effect on September 1, 2018, as previously announced because the Legislative Assembly has not yet passed the necessary legislation to implement it.

“Well that’s great news,” said Manitoba First interim leader Markus Buchart. “This is one case where the Progressive Conservatives’ inefficiency is good for Manitobans.”

The Pallister Government outlined its carbon tax in its March 12, 2018, budget. The budget announced the start-up date as September 1, 2018. The new tax was slated to raise $248 million in its first year alone.

Three days later the PCs rolled out Bill 16, The Climate and Green Plan Implementation Act. Although the Bill received first reading on March 15, 2018, it stalled thereafter and had not been passed by June 25, 2018, when the Legislative Assembly broke for summer recess. The session is set to resume on October 3, 2018. Therefore, Bill 16 cannot become law before then.

The carbon tax would add 5.32 cents to every litre of gasoline and 6.71 cents to every litre of diesel sold in the Province. As well it will increase the cost of heating with natural gas by 4.74 cents per cubic meter. Propane will also be taxed at 3.87 cents per cubic meter.

“They were going to pick a quarter of a billion dollars from Manitobans’ pockets,” said Buchart. “And they know that it will not reduce peoples’ use of gas, diesel, natural gas and propane for driving and heating. Every economist knows that driving and heating are not very sensitive to price increases. Pallister’s carbon tax is not about environmental protection. It is a tax grab, pure and simple.”

Manitoba First will be applying for registered party status this fall. It is the only Manitoba political party that opposes Pallister’s carbon tax. The party plans to run candidates in the next provincial general election slated for April 2020. Interim leader Markus Buchart is a former provincial government economist and lawyer. He was the leader of the Green Party of Manitoba from 1998 until 2005.

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For more information, contact Markus Buchart at 204-771-0953.

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