Citizens for a Livable Cranbrook Society provides grassroots leadership and an inclusive process, with a voice for all community members, to ensure that our community grows and develops in a way that incorporates an environmental ethic, offers a range of housing and transportation choices, encourages a vibrant and cultural life and supports sustainable, meaningful employment and business opportunities.

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Christy Clark's Inequality Budget, Paul Willcocks,Tyee

Christy Clark's Inequality Budget

Unfairness grows in BC's tax system, with families paying more and businesses less.
By Paul Willcocks, 19 Feb 2016,

Christy Clark likes talking about B.C.'s low taxes.

But since she's been premier, a fairly typical retired couple has seen their provincial taxes increase by 19 per cent.

A low-income family with two children has faced an even larger increase, paying 20 per cent more in provincial taxes since Clark's first budget in 2012. That's an increase of 4.6 per cent a year, more than twice the inflation rate.

There is nothing wrong with higher taxes, if they're equitable and the money helps build a stronger society.
But Clark falls down badly on equity, according to this week's budget documents.

While seniors getting by on modest pensions and low-income families have faced 20 per-cent tax hikes, their more affluent neighbours have pretty much escaped tax increases.

A family of four with $90,000 income is paying only 1.1 per cent more in taxes than they did in 2012. A single person with $80,000 income has faced a 2.2-per-cent increase in the Clark years. 
The family of four with a household income of $90,000 is paying $102 more in taxes and fees after four years of Clark's leadership. The single high-earner person is paying $165 more.

Yet the family of four scraping by on $30,000 is paying $448 a year more. (These numbers are all from Page 112 in the main budget report.)

Partly, this is a consequence of the government's focus on spin and sloganeering. Clark likes to be able to go around saying income taxes are the lowest in Canada, so government managers increase other taxes, like MSP premiums, to keep her happy.

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