Barrett questions constitutionality of carbon tax legislation

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Aug. 7, 2018

 

QUEEN’S PARK – Haldimand-Norfolk MPP questioned the constitutionality of the federal government’s carbon tax legislation during Question Period in the Ontario Legislature today.

“While we know that the Trudeau Liberals’ carbon tax will obviously drive up the costs of goods and services we all rely on every day, some have been asking what is the rationale for participating in two challenges,” Barrett said. “Can the Attorney General share with this House why participating in two challenges is important?”

Attorney General Caroline Mulroney answered, “Our ask of the Ontario Court of Appeal is to provide advice on whether or not the federal carbon tax is unconstitutional in whole or in part. Our legal team is going to work hard and has been working hard to build our case, and our government is confident in our position and that we will win.”

Legislation introduced last week in regards to cancelling the cap-and-trade legislation, if passed, would:

  • repeal the failed Cap-and-Trade legislation
  • protect taxpayers from further costs
  • set out regulation-making authority for a compensation framework
  • and requires the Ontario government to develop a climate change plan that reports back on progress.

During the exchange in Barrett’s supplementary question, it was revealed the government will be asking the Ontario Court of Appeal if the federal carbon tax is unconstitutional. Mulroney also reported the challenge will cost less than initially thought.

 

-30-

For more information, contact MPP Toby Barrett at 519-428-0446 or [email protected]a.org

 

 

YOUTUBE Video: https://youtu.be/UbmxHswfd9I

 

 

ONTARIO LEGISLATIVE ASSEMBLY

DRAFT HANSARD

Tuesday, Aug. 7, 2018

TAXATION

Mr. Toby Barrett: To the Attorney General: Last Thursday our government announced, in keeping with our commitment to people in Ontario, that we’re launching our own challenge of the federal carbon tax in the Ontario Court of Appeal—a challenge we can win. This announcement was made a few short weeks after the Premier announced that Ontario will also be participating in Saskatchewan’s challenge in the Saskatchewan Court of Appeal.

While we know that the Trudeau Liberals’ carbon tax will obviously drive up the costs of goods and services we all rely on every day, some have been asking what is the rationale for participating in two challenges? Can the Attorney General share with this House why participating in two challenges is important?

Hon. Caroline Mulroney: I am happy to clarify the necessity of this approach. Ontario is working co-operatively with Saskatchewan to ensure that both provinces’ references proceed as efficiently and as affordably as possible. Combined with our partners in Saskatchewan, our ask of our respective courts of appeal will allow for a broad consideration of all possible arguments regarding the validity of the federal carbon tax.

Anywhere the federal carbon tax is being constitutionally challenged, we want to be a part of that fight, Mr. Speaker. We believe this approach can only increase our likelihood of success. We were elected with a mandate to stand up for Ontario taxpayers, and that’s exactly what we’re doing.

Interjections.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Members will please take their seats.

Supplementary.

Mr. Toby Barrett: Through you, Speaker, I would like to thank the Attorney General for that explanation. We all realize …

… Supplementary.

Mr. Toby Barrett: Through you, Speaker, I would like to thank the Attorney General for that explanation. We all realize it’s important we stand up for people in Ontario. I know this government is working hard to do just that. I also know it’ll be a great day when we win this challenge for the people of Ontario.

To that end, I’m wondering if the Attorney General can speak a bit more about the benefits of our government’s efforts and what we can see to benefit people in Ontario.

Hon. Caroline Mulroney: Through you, Mr. Speaker, I want to thank the member from Haldimand–Norfolk for the follow-up question.

I agree wholeheartedly with his comments. Challenging the Trudeau Liberals’ carbon tax is important. Our government campaigned on a promise to the people that we would work hard to put money back in taxpayers’ pockets and bring real relief back to families. By challenging the federal carbon tax, we’re working hard to deliver on these commitments.

As I said in this House last week, our ask of the Ontario Court of Appeal is to provide advice on whether or not the federal carbon tax is unconstitutional in whole or in part. Our legal team is going to work hard and has been working hard to build our case, and our government is confident in our position and that we will win.

I’m also confident that this challenge, which will be using in-house lawyers at the Ministry of the Attorney General, will cost significantly less than initially thought. Our government knows that this challenge will protect the hardworking people of Ontario from an—