You can be forgiven if all of Trudeau’s tax hikes drive you to drink

Franco Terrazzano: Trudeau tax hikes: Brace for impact in 2024Brace for impact, taxpayers.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will be reaching deeper into your pockets in 2024 with payroll tax hikes, a carbon tax hike and alcohol tax hikes.

Canadians will be paying higher payroll taxes because of the mandatory rising Canada Pension Plan and Employment Insurance contributions.

If you make $73,200 or more, you’ll be paying an extra $347 in payroll taxes in 2024 for a total tax bill of $5,104.

Your employer will also be forced to fork over $5,524 in the new year.

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The federal government is imposing a new tax, which it calls “CPP2.” The original CPP taxes your income at six percent up to $68,500. The new CPP2 expands that threshold and taxes additional income at four percent up to $73,200.

Trudeau likes to claim he’s “working to make life more affordable.” But he’s also hiking a tax that directly makes life more expensive: the carbon tax.

The carbon tax increases the price of gasoline, diesel and home heating fuels, which is a big deal in our vast, cold country. The carbon tax also makes groceries more expensive, as it increases costs for the farmers who grow our food and the truckers who deliver it.

The carbon tax will cost the average family up to $911 in 2024, even after the rebates, according to the Parliamentary Budget Officer.

The feds are also scheming to implement a digital services tax. This new tax targets social media platforms, companies operating digital marketplaces, and businesses earning revenue from online advertising, such as Amazon, Google, Facebook, Uber and Airbnb.

Consumers should expect to pay higher prices because of the tax. When faced with the three percent DST in France, Amazon increased its commission charge to French vendors by the same amount.

You could be forgiven if all these tax hikes drive you to drink.

But when you pick up that case of Blue, a bottle of Pinot or a mickey of rum, Trudeau will be taking an extra 4.7 percent from you through his alcohol tax hikes.

The federal alcohol tax hike is expected to cost taxpayers almost $100 million.

Taxes in Canada already account for about half of the price of beer, 65 percent of the price of wine and more than three-quarters of the price of spirits.

While Trudeau hikes taxes, many other countries are providing relief.

The Canadian Taxpayers Federation identified 51 national governments that provided tax relief during the pandemic or to ease the burdens of inflation. Those governments include more than half of the G7 and G20 countries and two-thirds of the countries in the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.

Provincial governments – of all political stripes – are also providing relief.

Manitoba’s NDP government is suspending its fuel tax. Gas tax relief from Ontario’s Progressive Conservatives will save a family with a minivan and pick-up truck about $185 through June 2024. And the Liberals in Newfoundland and Labrador cut their gas tax by eight cents per litre.

The Alberta government promised to cut personal income taxes and passed legislation requiring a vote before a government can increase income or business taxes. Manitoba’s income tax cuts could save an individual taxpayer more than $2,000. Quebec lowered its income tax rate on the first two brackets. New Brunswick implemented significant income tax relief in 2023. And Prince Edward Island’s income tax cut will save middle-class taxpayers up to $200.

The fastest, simplest and easiest way for Trudeau to make all areas of life more affordable is to ditch his high-tax policies and allow Canadians to keep more of our money.

Franco Terrazzano is the Federal Director of the Canadian Taxpayers Federation

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