Ontario’s car tax is $2,000 higher than the federal rate, but the Liberals won’t budge
Ontario is facing a tax hike of about $2.8 million next year that will make it one of the highest in the country.
The Liberals are planning to increase the rate on new cars and trucks by an average of $400, but Premier Kathleen Wynne says the government won’t be budging.
“The government has decided not to increase car sales taxes in Ontario because we’re not going to take away anyone’s car.
We are going to have a tax on the fuel that goes into cars and we’re going to increase it on the vehicle, ” Wynne said Tuesday.
“We’re not gonna be going after the tax, and that’s a fact.
We’re not even going to be targeting people who drive in Ontario.”
The increase comes at a time when Ontario’s unemployment rate has hit its highest level in 25 years, according to Statistics Canada.
It’s been reported that Ontario’s auto tax will increase by a quarter of a cent over the next five years.
Ontario will be the fourth state to raise its sales tax to the federal level in the past year.
The increase has already been announced in Manitoba, Alberta and Saskatchewan, which are already seeing the biggest increases.
“It’s clear that the Liberals have no intention of going back to the days of the NDP government when we raised the gas tax and we had an auto sales tax,” said Robyn Benson, an economist with the Canadian Automobile Dealers Association.
“This is a significant move and we welcome it.
It puts the spotlight on Ontario’s record and makes Ontario the first state to introduce this tax.”
The Liberals say the money is needed to fund programs such as a $30-million pilot program to test the effectiveness of carbon taxes.
But critics say the move is just another step towards higher gasoline prices.
“Car sales tax has been a boon for the auto industry, but it has hurt the economy and made the economy worse,” said Doug Porter, president of the Ontario Automobile Association.
Bennett, the former Liberal MP, said it’s been a tough year for the province’s economy, and there was a “significant drop in manufacturing.”
“It has taken us a long time to find this path forward, and we haven’t been able to find the right balance between balancing jobs, the economy, affordable housing, infrastructure and the environment,” Bennett said.
Bennett also said it would be an insult to Ontarians if the Liberals raised their own taxes.
“What they’re doing is a tax increase on the people of Ontario,” Bennett added.
“They’re trying to take money out of the pockets of the middle class and the poor and put it in the pockets.
It is a complete and utter insult to the people who live in the province of Ontario and who pay the taxes to fund this.”