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Eco Taxes: The Latest McGuinty Tax Grab

(Queen's Park Report - July 9, 2010) Dalton McGuinty is really sneaky.  On Canada Day the Liberal government imposed a new tax on over 5,000 consumer goods, and I’m not even talking about the $3 billion HST tax grab.  I’m referring to the new ‘eco taxes’ that the Ontario Liberals applied to a host of products without notice. 

 

Put simply, these new ‘eco taxes’ are just another massive tax grab cloaked in environmentalism.  It seems that Dalton McGuinty’s idea of saving the planet is to further tax items that will save your life.  As an example, a fire extinguisher that costs $24.99 that protects people from combustion now has a $6.66 ‘eco tax’ tagged onto the price.  But that’s not all.  The ‘eco tax’ is a taxable tax.  In other words, you’ll also pay the HST on the new ‘eco tax.’  For the life saving fire extinguisher, that’s another 87 cents in sales taxes on top of the $6.66 ‘eco tax.’

What else gets taxed?  Pharmaceuticals, including prescription medication, are among the items, so too are syringes, needles and dish soap.  The tax rate varies depending on the size of the product.  For a $3.99 bag of concrete mix, which is one of the biggest sellers in any hardware store, the ‘eco tax’ is $3.90.  Add the HST to that and you can see that the tax on the product is more than the product itself.  Ridiculous, isn’t it?

Then there are products like BBQs and electric pet fences.  Those two items have an ‘eco tax’ of 3 cents apiece.  Yes, 3 cents.  This has got to be one of the most harebrained tax programs I’ve ever seen.

For a number of reasons, this is a very serious issue.  Not only is the ‘eco tax’ a regressive tax meant to suck money out of our wallets at the worst possible time, it is also alarming how it was implemented.  The Liberal government didn’t tell anyone about it.  In fact, this week a government official actually confirmed they tried to keep this hidden and made no effort to inform the public about it.

How arrogant has Dalton McGuinty become?  Does he think he’s so high and mighty that he can impose sweeping new taxes without telling anybody about it?  If that’s his attitude then he’s becoming an awfully dangerous person to be leading our province.

We saw the same pattern with the $53 million hidden energy tax he imposed earlier this year.  Much like the ‘eco tax,’ he didn’t bother to tell anyone about that either.  Does he think this is a game of ‘hide and sneak?’

After seven years of hikes on consumer taxes, income taxes, vehicle taxes, hydro taxes, land taxes, electronics taxes – and even tire and plastic bag taxes – the Ontario family budget has been stretched to the limit.  It’s time to turn this province around.


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