Election 2023: Campaign Roundup - Day 16
Welcome to Day 16 of our Alberta 2023 Campaign Roundup!
With the 2023 Alberta election now finally underway, I'll be bringing you daily updates on all the policy proclamations, platform promises, and political point-scoring from the campaign trail.
Campaign Roundup - Day 16:
- The NDP released a financial plan that they described as “fully-costed” (more on that in a second). They are predicting a $3.3 billion surplus over three years, with most of their new spending funded by raising the corporate tax rate by 38% - from 8% to 11%.
- An economist, Todd Hirsch, endorsed the NDP’s plan. You’d hope he would, given he helped write it. But, when asked by the media, he admitted to not having done any analysis on the negative impacts the tax hike would have on investment and jobs - something that we saw the last time the NDP implemented this same policy in 2015.
- Brian Jean, UCP Candidate for Fort McMurray - Lac La Biche, held a press conference to remind Albertans about the time Rachel Notley implemented a carbon tax, and to decry her proposed 38% increase in corporate taxes on large job creators.
- Another economist, Trevor Tombe, who is widely respected as being non-partisan, also pointed out a more than billion dollar error with the NDP’s math. Namely, the NDP are assuming they will get a perfectly proportional increase in corporate tax revenue by raising the rate, whereas economists know that as you raise the rate, the revenue comes in more slowly as businesses do less, structure themselves differently, move to other provinces, or aren’t started in the first place. It's basically like a store raising their prices by 38% and assuming they'll make 38% more because no one will stop buying their stuff. Tombe also pointed out that even the NDP themselves took this into account when they raised corporate taxes in 2015!
- In Saskatchewan, Premier Scott Moe announced his government’s plan to make the province's electricity grid net-zero by 2050 - aligning Saskatchewan with the UCP’s policy proposal. He said that the federal government's accelerated plan of 2035 - which the Alberta NDP have committed to - is impossible, as that doesn't provide enough time to deploy carbon capture technologies and nuclear power.
- Though Calgary was under a thick blanket of smoke today, there is some good wildfire news - evacuees from Drayton Valley and Grand Prairie County have been allowed to return home. A staggered re-entry of residents has already begun.
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