Taxed to death

This country faces incredible financial hurdles the Liberal governments seem incapable of solving

Christy Clark’s government taxing its citizens to death with rising user fees will be the downfall of the Liberals.

The NEWS reported Jan. 12 that we’re the only province in Canada with a fee for health care and we face increased B.C. Hydro costs, higher ICBC vehicle insurance rates plus continuous B.C. Ferry increases. The Canadian Taxpayers’ Federation stated those beneficial income tax cuts from the federal government will disappear because of provincial/municipal tax increases.

This country faces incredible financial hurdles the Liberal governments seem incapable of solving, other than through deficit budgets or throwing taxpayer money at. Ottawa gives away money we don’t have at an astronomical pace while B.C. seems intent on solving their mismanagement with increased user fees on the backs of debt-weary British Columbians. Governments, wake up — we have no money left for your blunders.

In order to increase tax revenues, a solution would be to immediately tax marijuana, even though I am personally opposed to legalization. The Globe & Mail in 2015 suggested that “Ottawa could rake in billions from taxing pot similar to alcohol and tobacco.”

Legalizing marijuana is a federal issue, but many U.S. states like Colorado reap in tax dollars — $125 million in 2015 and expect $2.5 billion in five years without federal government reprisals. Meanwhile, B.C. and Ottawa allow hundreds of illegal marijuana stores to operate in B.C. and receive no taxes. Tax them or shut them down.

Also, let’s privatize liquor outlets and auto insurance. The money in alcohol is in the wholesale end, not dispensing it with unionized employees in government-owned buildings. Alcohol tax revenues were $877 million in 2014.

For comparison, B.C. allows the sale of tobacco products, but doesn’t operate the stores or employees yet raised $614 million in 2013.

Getting rid of the monopolistic ICBC would be a blessing as rates would decrease. Governments should not operate liquor outlets or an auto insurance business, they should govern.

Mickey DonnellyParksville

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