OP/ED – Budget 2016: Brought to you by the next generation of Canadian taxpayers

March 24, 2016

Budget 2016: Brought to you by the next generation of Canadian taxpayers

It’s a budget of broken promises.  During the election campaign this fall, Justin Trudeau promised Canadians that any deficits under a Liberal government would not exceed $10 billion in their first two years and that the budget would be balanced by 2019.  Now that reality has set in for Canadian families and businesses, we are left with a $30 billion deficit with no plan to return to balance.

Justin Trudeau promised that a Liberal government would not raise taxes for Canadian families.  The former Conservative government understood that Canadians work hard for their money and that families deserve policies that allow them to work and prosper in all regions of the country, no matter who they voted for in the federal election. That is why we introduced measures such as the Children’s Fitness Tax Credit, the Children’s Art Tax Credit, the Education Tax Credit and the Textbook Tax Credit.  We also introduced the Universal Child Care Benefit and allowed parents with children under 18 to benefit from income splitting.  These were things that, no matter their circumstance, all Canadian families could benefit from.

Liberal Budget 2016 takes them all away and replaces them with programs that may, or may not, benefit you. In fact, under the new Liberal Child Benefit, at least 10% of families will be losing the support they received under the Conservative Universal Child Care Benefit.  Conservatives support policies that put more money back in the pockets of Canada’s middle-class.  Unfortunately, instead of focusing on lowering taxes for Canadian families, the Liberals are playing politics with family benefits.

Justin Trudeau also promised small business owners that his government would lower the small business tax rate to 9%.  He also promised an Employment Insurance holiday for employers hiring young people between the ages of 18 and 24. Neither of these measures appear in his first budget, which has been called “brutal” by the Canadian Federation of Independent Business.

Conservatives understand that small businesses are the backbone of our economy.  That is why we lowered both the corporate and small business tax rates.  We also created the Venture Capital Fund to support entrepreneurs and introduced the Small Business Job Credit, which helped small businesses save $225 million in taxes every year by reducing EI premiums.  It is unfortunate that this Liberal government does not share our commitment to Canada’s business community.

It is fair to say that some items in Budget 2016 are appealing (such as increased funding for low-income seniors, infrastructure funding for municipalities, and investments for innovation in clean technology). However it is not hard to create a budget full of goodies when you raise taxes for individuals, families and businesses to pay for them.

Canadians know that they have to spend within their means because they face consequences if they don’t. The Canadian government should be no different.  Borrowed money eventually has to be paid back, and after this week’s budget, your family’s share of the national debt has gone up by about $3,250 for this year alone.  Really, the tagline for Liberal Budget 2016 should be “brought to you by the next generation of Canadian taxpayers.”

Randy Hoback, MP (Prince Albert)
Hoback is the Chair of the Saskatchewan Conservative Party Caucus and the Vice-Chair of the Standing Committee on International Trade

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