Report from the Legislature January 18, 2018

Jan 18, 2018

Every province in Canada has now imposed some version of the Trudeau carbon tax – every province except Saskatchewan. Our made-in-Saskatchewan climate change plan will seriously address the challenge of climate change without a carbon tax. The NDP said we should "check with the feds" to see if that's OK.

We don't work for the federal government. We work for the people of Saskatchewan. The NDP may want the Trudeau carbon tax in Saskatchewan, but we're going to stand up for this province.

The Trudeau government has now released a 236-page draft bill to impose its federal carbon tax on provinces that don’t have one. Saskatchewan Justice is reviewing the draft federal legislation.

We continue to believe that the federal proposal to impose a carbon tax backstop on top of provincial climate change plans is a significant overreach by the Government of Canada and is open to Constitutional challenge.

If the Trudeau government decides to try and impose a carbon tax on Saskatchewan families and businesses, our government will continue our fight to prevent that from happening, including taking court action if necessary.

Ten years ago, our newly-elected Saskatchewan Party government set out to reverse years of decline under the NDP by creating one of the strongest investment climates in Canada.

During a decade of our plan in action, Saskatchewan has added over 60,000 more jobs and maintained among the strongest job and wage growth in all of Canada.

This period of exceptional growth has benefited our province in a variety of ways, including new and exciting opportunities to build careers and contribute to our communities.

We know that there have been challenges for our province’s economy and that has put pressure on businesses, jobs, families, and the province’s finances. We will continue to help diversify our economy by supporting growth in value-added production, innovation and technology.

Our government has also passed amendments to The Income Tax Act, extending the lower 2 per cent tax rate to small business income. This is going to provide greater incentive to hire more workers and invest in new capital. These changes build on our 2011 decision to reduce the small business tax rate from 4.5% to 2%, saving small businesses over half a billion dollars by the end of 2017.

Saskatchewan’s economy continues to show signs of momentum with 5,000 new jobs in December and 17% growth in building permits over the past year.

Saskatchewan’s 12 per cent corporate income tax rate continues to be competitive and among the lowest in the country, further enhancing our province’s significant advantages when attracting new investment and jobs.

Saskatchewan residents will also continue to benefit from lower provincial Personal Income Tax rates this year, which dropped half a percentage point effective July 1, 2017. Saskatchewan Personal Income Tax rates will drop by another half point on July 1, 2019.

An RBC Economics Provincial Outlook also projects Saskatchewan to lead the country with economic growth of 2.7 per cent for both 2018 and 2019. With a strengthening economy and our population continuing to grow, Saskatchewan is beginning a second decade of growth.