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François Legault wants to further lower taxes

Photo: Jacques Boissinot La Presse canadienne «Je pense qu’on doit, effectivement, regarder pour continuer à baisser dans un troisième mandat les impôts des Québécois, parce que les impôts au Québec sont dans le plafond. Ça nuit à l’économie», a déclaré François Legault.

Despite a record deficit of $11 billion in the provincial budget, Prime Minister François Legault still plans to propose a tax cut to Quebecers.

“I think that we must, indeed, look to continue to lower Quebecers' taxes in a third mandate, because taxes in Quebec are within the ceiling. It hurts the economy,” he said Wednesday.

In 2022, the Coalition Avenir Québec (CAQ) committed to lowering taxes by 2.5 percentage points over ten years. Last year, the Legault government reduced tax rates by one percentage point. The idea was to carry out a “responsible” tax cut, spread out until 2032.

When submitting his budget on Tuesday, the Minister of Finance, Eric Girard, did not want to reiterate the CAQ promise to continue the reductions in a possible third mandate. “For other tax cuts, there will be a general election before that. But as for the first four years, everything was delivered in year one [of the second term],” he replied.

Widenesses

The day after the budget, the oppositions took turns denouncing the largesse of the CAQ, linking it to the deficit situation in Quebec, which makes the Prime Minister the “king of debt and deficits”, according to the Liberal Party of Quebec.

“When we look at that, the spending, the 6.7 billion in [aid] checks, the Blue Spaces, the Seniors’ Homes […]. Rigor is absent with François Legault, then we have the result today, we have it in our faces,” launched the Liberal leader, Marc Tanguay. “This morning, we see the extent of François Legault’s piggy bank, it’s his sixth budget, 11 billion deficit,” he also said.

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“They preferred to cut taxes for the better off. The tax cuts for people earning $100,000 and more will cost us approximately $600 million each year, on a recurring basis, and it is because of these bad choices last year that today we find ourselves facing a deficit [of 11 billion],” also argued MP Haroun Bouazzi, from Québec solidaire.

“While we were swimming in surpluses, the CAQ made choices for a very comfortable government. So, we distributed checks worth billions, we made tax cuts for everyone, even those who earn more than $100,000 per year. We went there with four-year-old kindergartens, expensive Seniors' Homes at 1 million per room – some are still empty -, the Blue Spaces, the Blue Basket, studies for the third link, for the tramway, for the REM from the East, all that in the trash, because it will never happen. And now that we have a deficit of 11 billion, well, we ask ourselves the question on the government's side: what are we going to do to generate new revenue and balance this budget ?” also underlined the leader of the Parti Québécois (PQ), Paul St-Pierre Plamondon.

Mr. Legault responded by affirming that the PQ planned to raise taxes. “I hope it will be on the front page of the newspapers tomorrow: the leader of the PQ has just repeated it, a Parti Québécois government would increase taxes. It’s very clear,” he said in response.

Teilor Stone

By Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116