Fiberals admit HST will hurt: Editorial
By Toronto Sun
Ever since he was first elected in 2003, the truth and Premier Dalton McGuinty when it comes to taxes have been like two ships passing in the night.
Back then, it was his broken election promise not to raise taxes, as he promptly hit us with one of the largest tax grabs in history.
On Tuesday, after months of bafflegab and happy talk about the 13% Harmonized Sales Tax he’s imposing July 1, McGuinty finally admitted the painfully obvious — it’s going to hit working families. Hard.
Even that belated acknowledgement only came after he was confronted by data from Statistics Canada, requested by NDP Leader Andrea Horwath.
The average HST tax hike, StatsCan says, will be $792 annually per family.
Only families earning under $20,000 come out ahead.
How telling the NDP had to get this information from StatsCan, rather than the Liberals, who have been fudging the facts and hiding the truth about the massive impact of the HST on Ontarians ever since they announced it more than a year ago.
Up until now, they’ve insisted their total tax reform package meant most Ontarians would benefit under tax harmonization, which actually means massively expanding the 8% Ontario sales tax to hundreds of goods and services on which, at present, only the 5% GST applies.
This includes such basic necessities as electricity, gasoline and heat.
On Tuesday, McGuinty finally admitted: “For families at the outset, there will be an increase in taxation,” adding he realizes this won’t be easy on them.
He said that’s why the government is giving them up to $1,000 during the HST implementation period, plus other benefits, to cushion the tax hikes.
Problem is, save for a small income tax cut, the extra cash lasts for just one year. The HST increases are forever.
Plus, they’re hitting just as Ontario struggles to recover from a deep recession.
McGuinty also insisted businesses will pass along savings to consumers resulting from tax harmonization — some day.
“Experience tells us that over time those savings will in fact be passed on to consumers,” he said.
After all, we didn’t dub McGuinty and Co., the “Fiberals” for nothing