Editorial Cartoon by Graeme MacKay, The Hamilton Spectator – Thursday, November 20 2014
Charles Sousa won’t rule out Ontario tax hike
As the Liberal government staggers under the weight of a $12.5-billion deficit, Finance Minister Charles Sousa refuses to rule out raising taxes.
“I am concentrating on those measures that I have spoken about already, which are making certain that the underground economy is addressed, looking at ways to expand our revenues through our assets, looking to ensure that we transform government,” he told reporters after question period.
A day after delivering his fall economic statement, Sousa told reporters he prefers to “maintain our tax rates the way they are now” but when asked seven times if tax increases could be part of his plan to bring in more money, Sousa wouldn’t dismiss an increase.
Progressive Conservative MPP Monte McNaughton, a leadership candidate, said the Liberals will take the easy way out.
“I think (Premier) Kathleen Wynne is going to take the easy route and that is to raise taxes instead of reducing spending,” McNaughton told the Star.
In the legislature, he asked Wynne: “How can you expect the people of Ontario to believe that you’ll balance the budget without raising their taxes when you keep overestimating revenue and won’t stop spending?”
The Liberals’ July budget did not increase corporate taxes but did increase taxes on aviation fuel and for individuals earning more than $150,000 a year.
Sousa said he wants to “plug the leaks that exist in our tax system” so that everyone pays their fare share. That alone could bring in $400 million more, he said. (Source: Toronto Star)