OTTAWA—A new analysis finds that high-income families will receive a disproportionate share of the benefits from the Conservatives’ tax-cut promises.
According to Standing Up For Which Families? Who Benefits From the Conservative Tax Cut Promises, by Sheila Block and Ellen Russell, the 5.4% of families earning over $150,000 a year will receive 27.9% of the benefits from the Conservatives’ tax cuts modelled in the report—an average of over $2,010.
Almost half of Canadian families (48.6%) earn less than $40,000, yet they will receive only 20.3% of the benefits of the Conservative tax cuts, an average of just over $163.
“The Conservative package is much more directed toward high-income families,” says Block. “They are obviously ‘standing up’ for some families more than others.”
The Conservatives frequently touted their plan to cut the GST as proof of their commitment to help “working Canadians.” However, on average, families earning less than $40,000 will receive under $129 from a 1% reduction in the GST, and families with incomes over $150,000 will receive an average of over $900.
The Conservatives’ proposed capital gains tax cut is targeted very effectively—towards high-income families. Block and Russell estimate that families with incomes above $150,000 will receive an average of over $660 from this tax cut, while those earning less than $40,000 will receive under $6.
“According to our analysis, the Conservatives have underestimated the costs of some of their proposed tax cuts,” says Russell. “Expensive tax cuts like these set the stage for more pressure for spending cuts. Low-income Canadians benefit relatively little from these tax cuts, yet they may be hurt a great deal when child care and other programs are cut to pay for tax cuts that largely benefit high-income families.”
The study concludes with a redesigned tax package that demonstrates how the Conservatives could more effectively and efficiently lower taxes for low- and middle-income families. In addition to being much more equitable, the redesigned package is also more affordable, costing $2.7 billion compared to the Conservatives’ $6.1 billion plan.
Sheila Block is Director of Health and Nursing Policy with the Registered Nurses' Association of Ontario and a CCPA Research Associate. Ellen Russell is the CCPA's Senior Research Economist.
Standing Up For Which Families? Who Benefits From the Conservative Tax Cut Promises is available on the CCPA web site: http://www.policyalternatives.ca
For more information contact Kerri-Anne Finn, CCPA Communications Officer, at 613-563-1341 x306.