VICTORIA - The B.C. government is seeking written submissions on the revenue-neutral carbon tax to help inform the comprehensive review announced with Budget 2012, Finance Minister Kevin Falcon said today.
The last scheduled increase in the carbon tax takes effect July 1, 2012.
The government announced in February that the review would cover all aspects of the carbon tax, including revenue neutrality, and will consider the effect of the tax on the competitiveness of B.C. businesses such as those in the agriculture sector, and in particular, B.C. food producers.
Every dollar generated by the tax is returned to British Columbians through reductions in other taxes. Since it was first introduced in 2008, it has returned $500 million more to taxpayers in reductions than it has raised in revenue. Tax cuts include such measures as income tax credits for low-income individuals, five per cent reductions to the first two personal income tax rates and a northern and rural homeowners' property tax benefit of up to $200 annually, as well as reductions to business taxes.
Written submissions can be made to the Minister of Finance by Aug. 31, 2012, for consideration as part of the 2013 budget process.
To find out more about our carbon tax initiative and how it's working for our Climate Action Plan, please click on this link to see Minister of Environment Terry Lake's release: http://www.env.gov.bc.ca/cas/2012-update.html
Kevin Falcon - Finance Minister and Deputy Premier -
"We remain committed to addressing climate change and are proud that B.C. is a North American leader. However, four years in, the revenue-neutral carbon tax remains the only one of its kind in North America and this is a good time to pause and examine how the carbon tax is affecting our economic competitiveness."
"We are beginning a comprehensive review that will cover all aspects of the carbon tax, including revenue neutrality, and will consider the impact on the competitiveness of B.C. businesses such as the agricultural sector, and in particular, B.C.'s food producers."
- On July 1, 2012, the carbon tax will rise to a rate equivalent to $30/tonne of CO2 equivalent emissions. This translates to an increase of 1.11 cents per litre for gasoline, 1.28 cents per litre for diesel and an increase of 0.95 cents per cubic metre for natural gas.
- Government provides a Low Income Climate Action Tax Credit, paid quarterly, to help offset the carbon tax paid by low- and modest-income British Columbians. The maximum annual payment is $115.50 per adult and $34.50 per child.
- The carbon tax is a volume-based tax. It does not change with the price of fuel.
- Since 2008, tax cuts have returned approximately $500 million more to taxpayers than the amount of carbon tax paid.
- The Minister of Finance is required by law to annually prepare a three-year plan for recycling carbon tax revenues through tax reductions. This plan is presented with the provincial budget and can be found at: www.bcbudget.gov.bc.ca/2012/bfp/2012_Budget_Fiscal_Plan.pdf
Information on the carbon tax and review and how to submit is available at: www.fin.gov.bc.ca/tbs/tp/climate/carbon_tax.htm
Ministry of Finance Tax Schedule - Carbon tax rates by fuel type: www.sbr.gov.bc.ca/documents_library/shared_documents/Carbon_Tax_Rates_by_Fuel_Type_from_Jan_2010.pdf
For information on how to make greener choices that save money at home, at work and on the road, visit LiveSmart BC at: www.livesmartbc.ca/
Ministry of Finance