The NDP Opposition is calling on Premier Scott Moe and the Saskatchewan Party Government to cut the provincial gas tax in an effort to help the province’s residents stem the tide of rising costs. The idea is to suspend the 15 cent per litre tax to offset the 14 cent a litre carbon tax on fuel.
“This government’s first priority should be ensuring hardworking people can fill the tank, stock the fridge and put gifts under the tree without finding another job. Now is not the time for a million-dollar junket to Dubai,” said Opposition Leader Carla Beck. “All levels of government need to get back to basics and start delivering real results for people. Enough finger-pointing.”
The Saskatchewan NDP gave notice of a private member’s motion on Tuesday calling on the Sask. Party government to temporarily remove the provincial fuel tax from gasoline and diesel. The policy is expected to be debated later this week and, if passed, will be reviewed after six months.
The NDP release states that both Alberta and Newfoundland and Labrador have already delivered gas tax relief, and that similar measures will take effect in Manitoba on January 1, 2024. Ontario announced that their gas relief program would be extended to June 30 of next year.
The release also cites reports that Saskatchewan residents are experiencing the highest levels of financial insecurity in Canada. The NDP are critical that the Moe government did not reference these financial strains or offer cost-of-living relief in this session’s throne speech. They criticized the focus on pronouns in schools and plans for what it says is “a third costly trip to Dubai.”
“The Sask. Party hiked power bills three times in the last year and expanded the PST in a historic way. Ottawa can and should scrap the carbon tax, but Scott Moe also needs to step up,” said Affordability Critic Trent Wotherspoon. “Families are breaking the bank to fill the tank just to get to work, take the kids to activities or run into town. Families deserve relief and scrapping this gas tax will save them hundreds.”
Their release states that Suspending the provincial gas tax for six months would decrease revenues by $225 million and save households approximately $356. Commercial and industrial customers would see $150 million in savings.
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