Government Spending & Taxes

— Apr 28, 2020
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A Friend in Need: How Albertans Continue to Keep Federal Finances Afloat, 2020

A Friend in Need: How Albertans Continue to Keep Federal Finances Afloat, 2020 finds that from 2014 to 2018, Alberta’s net contribution to federal finances was $94.9 billion, by far the largest contribution from any province during that time period. Crucially, Ontario’s net contribution was $58.3 billion, but it’s population in 2018 was more than three times larger than Alberta’s. British Columbia was the only other net contributing province ($29.6 billion) during that time, meaning every other province received more from Ottawa than it sent to Ottawa.

— Feb 27, 2020
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The Budget That Changed Canada: Essays on the 25th Anniversary of the 1995 Budget is a new book of collected essays celebrating Jean Chrétien and Paul Martin’s historic federal budget that tackled head-on the pressing fiscal challenges facing the nation following nearly 30 years of deficits and mounting debt. The 1995 budget, which reduced program spending and led to balanced budgets, shrinking debt and eventually broad-based tax relief, laid the foundation for more than a decade of economic prosperity and is one of the main reasons Canada weathered the 2009 global recession better than most other industrialized countries.

— Feb 20, 2020
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Alberta’s Lost Advantage on Personal Income Tax Rates

Alberta’s Lost Advantage on Personal Income Tax Rates finds that the province’s top combined personal income tax rate is now more than 10 percentage points higher than the top rate in several other energy-producing jurisdictions. Whereas in 2014, Alberta’s top PIT rate was the lowest in North America, now it is the 10th highest following tax increases by the provincial and federal governments, and a reduction of the federal top rate in the U.S.

— Feb 19, 2020
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Interest Costs and their Growing Burden on Canadians

Interest Costs and their Growing Burden on Canadians finds that in fiscal year 2019-20, Ottawa will spend more than $24 billion on federal debt interest payments, as the federal debt has increased by more than $260 billion since the 2008-09 recession. The study also compares government debt interest costs among provinces.

— Feb 4, 2020
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Examining Federal Debt in Canada by Prime Ministers Since Confederation, 2020

Examining Federal Debt in Canada by Prime Ministers Since Confederation, 2020 finds that Justin Trudeau is the only prime minister since 1900—and only one of three prime ministers since Confederation—whose government increased Canada’s per-person debt without facing a world war or recession. Compare that to other recent governments led by Jean Chrétien, Paul Martin and Lester B. Pearson whose tenures were also without a world war or recession. The Chrétien government cut per-person federal government debt by 13.3 per cent followed by Martin’s (7.6 per cent) and Pearson’s (6.7 per cent).

— Jan 28, 2020
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Refining Alberta’s Equalization Gambit

Refining Alberta’s Equalization Gambit argues that, despite popular misconceptions (particularly in Central Canada), Alberta can compel other provinces and the federal government to negotiate aspects of the Constitution including equalization. The essay cites past Supreme Court judgments and germane sections of the Constitution Act, 1982.

— Jan 23, 2020
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Should Upper-Income Canadians Pay More Income Tax?

Should Upper-Income Canadians Pay More Income Tax? finds that in 2017, the latest year of comparable data, the top 10 per cent of income-earners earned 34.2 per cent of Canada’s total income—yet paid 54.6 per cent of the country’s total income taxes.

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