March 16, 2018

Jason Kenney: Albertans must have say on carbon tax

United Conservative Leader Jason Kenney today introduced Private Member’s Bill 202: The Alberta Taxpayer Protection (Carbon Tax Referendum) Amendment Act.

“The NDP hid their job-killing carbon tax from voters in the last election. Now they’re hiding from voters their intention to keep raising it,” said United Conservative Leader Jason Kenney. “We’ve been clear that should the United Conservatives form government, our first measure will be the Carbon Tax Repeal Act. Albertans will indeed have a chance to render judgement on the NDP’s carbon tax in spring 2019. But we must also ensure that a future government – even one a decade in the future – does not repeat the NDP’s affront to democracy by implementing a carbon tax without first consulting voters.”

The NDP did not campaign on its carbon tax in the 2015 campaign. Their election platform does not mention ‘carbon tax,’ nor do the fiscal tables account for the the billions of dollars in tax revenue collected from a carbon tax.

“As President of the Canadian Taxpayers Federation (CTF), I successfully advocated for Ralph Klein’s government to pass the Alberta Taxpayer Protection Act, a law requiring a government to hold a referendum before any effort to implement a provincial sales or consumption tax. At the time, few were discussing a tax on air, and as such ‘carbon tax’ is not specifically listed in the law. Yet as nearly everything Albertans do or consume is linked to carbon, the NDP’s carbon tax at the very least violates the spirit of the law requiring a referendum for a provincial consumption tax. My bill rectifies and clarifies this by specifically adding ‘carbon tax’ to the law,” said Kenney.

Recently obtained federal documents show that the Trudeau Liberals intend to increase the carbon tax above $50 per tonne as part of their ‘framework,’ of which the Alberta NDP Government is a proud and willing signatory. Additional documents suggest that the price could eventually go as high as $300 per tonne.

“My bill would also require any increase to the NDP’s carbon tax to put to the voters directly. The NDP has already increased their carbon tax by 50 per cent once, and agreed to Justin Trudeau’s further 67 per cent hike in the near future. Politicians cannot hide their endless tax hikes from voters. If The NDP is confident in its carbon tax – the central policy of this government – it should have no problem putting the matter to a referendum,” concluded Kenney.