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Costly cap and trade scheme = Wynne Liberal slush fund

January 4, 2017

Costly cap and trade scheme = Wynne Liberal slush fund

New year, new tax…same old cash grabs

 Kitchener – As Ontario motorists and homeowners dig deeper to pay for the Wynne Liberal’s new-year, cap-and-trade tax grab, Kitchener-Conestoga MPP Michael Harris says government’s track record on transparency leaves people wondering where their money is being spent.

“After already paying the highest electricity rates in North America, while shelling out for gas taxes and road tolls, Ontario motorists have now been met with Wynne’s New Year’s levy – a cap and trade scheme that funnels more into the Liberal spending machine,” Harris said. “Despite their vocal protests that revenues will be dedicated to green projects, given this government’s poor record on transparency, most Ontarians see this scheme for what it is – another Liberal slush fund under the guise of environmental protection.”

Harris pointed out that the Auditor General echoed concerns on the cap-and-trade program before the New Year, indicating that the government is now re-directing previously committed project funds to pay down debt, then substituting the newfound cap-and-trade revenue back into those projects.

“As usual, the Liberals are playing shell games to cover their years of waste and mismanagement and it’s time they come clean with Ontarians,” Harris argued. “In the end, Ontario residents are paying the freight for a program the Auditor General noted would result in achieving only 20 per cent of the province’s emission reduction targets.

“This is why we in the Official Opposition fought this scheme every step of the way while the Wynne Liberals pushed it through with NDP support – and it’s why we will continue that fight to call for further transparency and Auditor oversight to ensure the money raised off the backs of taxpayers goes towards reducing emissions and costs for Ontario businesses and families.”

Harris confirmed that, according to projections, cap and trade will increase Ontario families’ home heating costs by as much as $13.54 month, and increase the price of gas at the pump by 4.3 cents a litre – the extended impacts will further mean that everything, from groceries to clothing, will become more expensive.