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Economic update: Girard misses yet another opportunity to reduce the tax burden

Author: Renaud Brossard 2021/11/25

The Canadian Taxpayers Federation is criticizing Minister of Finance Éric Girard’s decision to fight inflation with temporary and targeted tax credits.

“Temporary and targeted tax credits won’t do much to lower Quebecers’ tax burden, which is the highest on the continent,” said CTF Quebec Director Renaud Brossard. “Every Quebecer has been affected by the cost-of-living increase and know their dollars are not going as far as they used to.

Girard used the Economic Update to announce the creation of the Extraordinary Cost of Living Allowance. This allowance will be sent once to taxpayers eligible to the Solidarity Tax Credit. The measure is valued at $740 million.

The deficit has been revised to $6.8 billion for 2021-22, down $5.5 billion from budget estimates.

Public accounts published by the Department of Finance peg the deficit for 2020-21 at $7.5 billion, including payments to the Generations Fund. This is $2.5 billion lower than the government estimated back in June 2021.

The government has spent $7.7 billion paying interests on its $190 billion debt last year.

“A lower deficit is good news, but the government must keep a close eye on its debt,” said Brossard. “If interest rates were to go up by one percentage point, Quebec taxpayers would have an extra $2 billion bill to pay for every year.”