By Paige MacPherson, Amber Ruddy and Stephanie Kusie
When faced with a slumping economy, residents and businesses pore over their expenses with a fine tooth comb to ensure value for the services paid for. People often complain about their property tax bill, but is there any merit to the grumbling?
By Stephanie Kusie, Amber Ruddy and Paige MacPherson
According to the Chinese zodiac, 2016 will be the year of the monkey. But will it also be the year of the tax? Unfortunately, if Alberta's big-city mayors have their way, all signs point to yes when it comes to city charters. What advocates of democracy and choice can hope for is that the premier puts the power in the hands of the people and lets city residents decide.
By: Paige MacPherson, Amber Ruddy and Stephanie Kusie
In mid-November, Premier Rachel Notley was given the chance to end a long-held belief that her government is considering giving Alberta’s big cities historic new taxing powers.
Instead, she refused to rule out granting new tax powers to Alberta’s big cities. She said discussions with the mayors of Calgary and Edmonton about big city charters hadn’t yet reached that point, but has welcomed the big city mayors to meet with the entire NDP cabinet in January.
Adding fuel to the tax fire, just days before Calgary City Council discussed city charters behind closed doors in an in-camera meeting.
Once again, Alberta taxpayers and businesses are left out of the discussion, despite the fact that they’ll be the ones to pay the bill if Calgary imposes a city sales tax or Edmonton slaps on a city gas tax.
See Charter, Think Tax Coalition Calls on Mayors and Premier to Sign Pledge Promising No New Tax Powers Without Citywide Referendums
CALGARY, AB: The See Charter, Think Tax Coalition is calling on Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi, Edmonton Mayor Don Iveson, and Premier Notley to sign a pledge promising they will not secure new tax powers for Edmonton or Calgary without citywide referendums.
By: Paige MacPherson, Amber Ruddy, Stephanie Kusie
Look, up in the sky! It’s a tool, it’s a levy, it’s a charter – no, it’s a tax! And it’s about to empty pockets near you.
The mayors of Edmonton and Calgary have been busy pushing for city charters – agreements that could give their councils new taxing powers.
Over the last year, Albertans have been served a heaping pile of new taxes and fees. There’s no doubt times are tough. But what about the taxes we don’t see coming? If we don’t look up, a whopping tax burden might fall right into our wallets before we know it.
Take, for example, a city sales tax.
New coalition wants answers on where the Alberta government stands
CALGARY, AB: See Charter, Think Tax is a new Alberta-based coalition urging the provincial government to reject calls by Alberta’s big city mayors for the power to impose new taxes. The See Charter, Think Tax coalition is demanding clarity from Premier Rachel Notley and Municipal Affairs Minister Deron Bilous where it stands on city charter arrangements being negotiated with Calgary and Edmonton.
The coalition includes representatives from the Canadian Taxpayers Federation (CTF), the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) and Common Sense Calgary (CSC) – three groups representing those who would pay for an increased city tax burden.
“Overspending on the day-to-day operations of cities must be addressed before big-city mayors demand even more from taxpayers,” said CFIB Alberta Director Amber Ruddy. “We recognize cities face budgeting challenges but that is largely a function of poor planning, not a lack of revenue.”
It is expected further detail about how the province plans to modernize the relationship between big cities will be discussed in the Alberta budget, to be delivered on October 27th.
CALGARY – A newly-formed coalition is urging the provincial government to reject calls by Alberta’s big city mayors for the power to impose new taxes.
Three organizations have banded together to create the Alberta-based “See Charter, Think Tax” coalition: the Canadian Taxpayers Federation (CTF), the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) and Common Sense Calgary.
The coalition is asking Alberta Premier Rachel Notley and Municipal Affairs Minister Deron Bilous to clarify where they stand on city charter arrangementsbeing negotiated with Calgary and Edmonton.
A coalition of taxation watchdog groups says proposed new charters for Calgary and Edmonton are just an attempt by those cities to get the power to levy new taxes.
See Charter, Think Tax is calling on Premier Rachel Notley and Municipal Affairs Minister Deron Bilous to clarify where the new government stands on the charters, which were still on the negotiating table when the Tories were swept from power this spring.
NEWSTALK 770 CALGARY -- A coalition made up of the Canadian Taxpayers Federation, the Canadian Federation of Independent Business and Common Sense Calgary are calling on the province to not give cities any new taxing powers.
Both Edmonton and Calgary are asking for city charters to allow them more powers.
The See Charter, Think Tax coalition are concerned that the new powers will lead to higher taxes.
The coalition says overspending in the day to day operations of cities must be addressed before the cities demand even more from taxpayers.
It’s expected we’ll get more detail on this municipal charter in the Alberta budget October 27th. The province recently announced its updated Municipal Government Act would be complete in time for the 2017 municipal elections.
By: Stephanie Kusie
Across Calgary, many families are feeling the pinch due to the current economic slowdown.
Similarly, many businesses have had to put off expansion plans, delay non-essential spending and cancel perks for employees.
That’s why Common Sense Calgary called on City Hall to tighten its belt and reduce its planned property tax increase down to 1.3%; Statistics Canada’s inflation rate for our city. Many readers will know that council has been passing tax increases much higher as of late.