Stelmach throws out recent alcohol tax hike
Alberta Premier Ed Stelmach said he's getting rid of the recently adopted provincial liquor tax hike.
This move could cause prices to come down on beer, wine and hard liquor by as early as this weekend. The 30 per cent liquor tax increase was announced in the spring budget.
Harvey Parhar with Liquor Way in Edmonton said he lost customers when the province imposed the 30 per cent tax increase on beer, wine and spirits a few months ago. Parhar said Stelmach's announcement makes him a happy man.
"I don't think this is the right time for the province to be raising taxes people are feeling the pinch from job losses," he said.
As of Tuesday, deliveries or orders to liquor stores will see a 12-pack of beer costing $1.30 less, a bottle of wine down 75 cents and an average size bottle of hard liquor will drop by $2.85.
Alberta Premier Ed Stelmach also said he will not introduce a sales tax or increase personal or corporate taxes as long as he's the premier.
"As long as I'm premier of this province, there will be no tax increases," he said.
Stelmach said the way to deal with the tough economic times is to offer
incentives to companies, not for the government to collect more cash
He said he's made his position clear to his cabinet and he wants to stress the fact that people shouldn't expect the government to take in any extra money.
"When we say no tax increases it's no tax increases, period," said Stelmach.
The Canadian Taxpayers Federation said the premier's promise hits the right note.
"Premier Stelmach's unequivocal promise to never raise taxes is very welcomed," said Scott Hennig, CTF Alberta director. "He's made a big promise today and it's excellent news for taxpayers."
Hennig said the next step for Stelmach should be committing to not running up deficits and debts into the future. The CTF believes Stelmach needs to balance the budget through spending reductions.
The province ran an $852-million deficit last fiscal year.
With files from David Ewasuk, the Canadian Press, and CTV Calgary