Thursday, March 13, 2008

Ontario Backtracks on Debt Repayment

The Ontario Minister of Finance has announced an end to mandatory debt repayment when in surplus. Instead, if/when a surplus exceeds $800 million, the first $600 million will go to debt and the rest to municipalities for roads, bridges and highways.

This is McGuinty's sop to municipalities for infrastructure funding. So far, municipal response is postitive which proves how little most municipal politicians know about budgets!

First, with an economy contracting and a provincial government with a big spending problem surpluses are even less likey to occur.

Second, there will only be a surplus if the government does NOT shovel cash out the door in year-end spending, which, the Auditor General points out, the McGuinty government usually does.

Finally, if there is money left over at year end it won't be much for cities and infrastructure. Instead of this smoke and mirrors approach to funding there should be a Gas Tax Accountability Act as there is in Manitoba and Saskatchewan which by law would allocate 100% of fuel tax revenues to roads, bridges and highways.

Of course this issue ignores the fundamental point that surpluses are structured over-taxation and should be returned to taxpayers in the form of tax relief or debt relief then tax reduction through a tax-back guarantee.

1 comment:

lorne perry said...

I am in a group in Halifax fighting the fight. Until we can join hands accross the country and stand as one and act as one, our efforts will not have much effect.
We are fighting for a new and fair act. The sysrem being one where little taxpayers will be treated as well as the "high rollers"
We are looking at the advantages of having properties treated as income taxes are treated. That is aooly them progressively so the luxury properties will be taxed at a higher rate and where people with a low income will enjoy a favorable rate.
There is much to do and united accross the land, we CAN.

CTF You Tube Channel

Canadian Taxpayers Federation's Fan Box