Residents in Saskatchewan won’t receive the tax break they might have planned on when they file their tax returns this spring.
The province is one of four seeing a reduction in the federal government’s carbon tax rebate and the region with the largest decrease.
Earlier this year, the federal government’s model had a family of four collecting a carbon tax rebate of $903 on their 2019 income tax return.
That has now changed to just $809.
Saskatchewan’s environment minister said it comes in time for his face-to-face meeting with his federal counterpart.
“One of the questions I’ll have is, ‘What has changed?’ I mean we would’ve seen campaign literature that went across the province from Liberal candidates just in the last couple of months,” Dustin Duncan said, referring to the recent federal election.
A statement from the federal government said the rebate was adjusted based on a change in the projection of how many tax dollars will be collected.
“Most households will receive more money back through these payments than what they will pay out due to federal pollution pricing — helping families to make ends meet as we move toward a cleaner future,” Finance Minister Bill Morneau said.
The Canadian Taxpayers Federation said the latest announcement should raise some alarms.
“They can’t even get the numbers for the first year right,” said prairie director Todd MacKay. “We got one set of numbers before the election, another set of numbers after the election. But where is this going after that?”
“Ottawa owes Saskatchewanians an explanation because it should have the plan figured out.”
The carbon tax is being debated in the Alberta Court of Appeal as that province attempts to fight the federally-imposed plan.
Saskatchewan has appealed the tax to the Supreme Court of Canada and a hearing is expected in 2020.