The Shotgun Blog
Thursday, May 22, 2008
Gas tax relief crashes into Wall
Lee Harding, Saskatchewan Director of the Canadian Taxpayers Federation, writes...
The bluster Brad Wall used against gas taxes in Opposition is now buried under millions of dollars of revenue for his government. In the sharpest of contrasts, the man who once proposed drastic gas tax relief now argues for the status quo.
Continue reading “Gas tax relief crashes into Wall.”
And let Saskatchewan premier Brad Wall and Prime Minister Stephen Harper know that you want tax relief at the pumps by signing the CTF petition here.
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Talk about windfall profits.
I'll never understand why taxes are a percentage of total price rather than a set price per litre. The retailers have to exist under that system. They aren't making any more profits from increased prices, just the opposite. They lose money for several reasons that any business person can explain to you. They're also seeing a decline in sales as people cut down on travel.
As for Premier Wall not wanting to let go of such a jackpot, it's not all that surprising. We heard promises to eliminate the GST a few years back. It took a change of government to get that ball rolling. Maybe he'll do something if they end up with a huge surplus.
Posted by: dp | 2008-05-22 3:51:24 PM
The price of fuel will bring the economy to a grinding halt this year. Already happening in Ontario. Everything in this country moves on wheels and they are getting more expensive to turn every day. A few will benefit but the vast majority will feel more pain every month. When Russia collapsed they had scientists out in the fields picking potatoes just to survive. We take everything for granted in this country. History shows that it could be a mistake. It will be entertaining.
Posted by: peterj | 2008-05-22 10:44:26 PM
I saw a graphic somewhere today showing that the cost of gasoline at the pumps is:
48% cost of crude
17% cost of refining
You pay 11 times as much to government, which does nothing, than to oil companies which do all of the exploring, drilling, distributing, refining, and retailing. Not a bad gig, if you can get it.
Posted by: Grant Brown | 2008-05-23 12:55:20 AM
While government could provide some gas price relief by scaling back taxes, it would be a temporary reprieve. Oilman T. Boone Pickens was on Glenn Beck's CNN Headline News show last evening and explained why gas prices are high and will go even higher. If I recall the stats correctly, Pickens said the world produces about about 85 billion barrels of oil a year and demand is at 86 billion. Demand outsrips supply so prices rise.
Posted by: JMD | 2008-05-23 8:19:02 AM
In the early 70's, the price of oil went from $3 a barrel to $30 a barrel.
Everybody adjusted because they had to.
Today, the price of a barrel has doubled in a year.
We'll adjust to the volatility eventually.
In theory, the taxation on gasoline is a user-pay way of construction and upgrading of roadways.
Far as I can gather, there is increased economic activity under Brad Wall. Saskatchewan, like Alberta, is undergoing an economic boom.
And, roads do not magically appear with no cost.
Now, the fact the revenue is twice as high as it was ... compared with labour and material costs is certainly a matter for legitimate debate.
Posted by: set you free | 2008-05-23 8:58:13 AM
$30 per barrel oil in the early 1970s is equivalent to $150-$180 dollar per barrel oil in today's dollars. Taking inflation and fuel efficiency improvements into account, it is cheaper to drive today than it was 35 years ago. That's why so many people still drive SUVs.
Meanwhile, taxes have outstripped inflation by a wide margin over the same period of time. Gas taxes go into general revenues. Governments have never spent as much on roads, bridges, etc. as they have reaped in gas taxes.
Posted by: Grant Brown | 2008-05-23 11:16:38 AM
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