October 7, 2015 12:36 pm
Updated: October 7, 2015 2:02 pm

Newly-formed Alberta coalition rallies against new city taxes

WATCH ABOVE: A new coalition is demanding taxpayers and small businesses have more of a say in city tax powers with organizations banding together to create the ‘See Charter, Think Tax’ group. Sarah Offin reports.

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CALGARY – A newly-formed coalition is urging the provincial government to reject calls by Alberta’s big city mayors for the power to impose new taxes.

Three organizations have banded together to create the Alberta-based “See Charter, Think Tax” coalition: the Canadian Taxpayers Federation (CTF), the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) and Common Sense Calgary.

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The coalition is asking Alberta Premier Rachel Notley and Municipal Affairs Minister Deron Bilous to clarify where they stand on city charter arrangements being negotiated with Calgary and Edmonton.

“Overspending on the day-to-day operations of cities must be addressed before big-city mayors’ demand even more from taxpayers,” said CFIB Alberta Director Amber Ruddy in a Wednesday news release.

The See Charter, Think Tax coalition said it was formed as a way to give a voice to the taxpayers, small businesses and residents who will bear the brunt of any new city taxes.

“Taxpayers deserve to have their say in a citywide referendum if any new taxes are being considered,” said CTF Alberta Director Paige MacPherson. “Call them tools, levies, powers, charters – these are historic new city taxes Albertans have never seen before. The provincial government should demand the consent of the people.”

It is expected further detail about how the province plans to modernize the relationship between big cities will be discussed in the Alberta budget, which will be delivered on Oct. 27.

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