This post was last updated on September 21, 2018.
On September 20, 2018, Public Interest Alberta's Executive Director, Joel French, spoke in Lethbridge for a public event hosted by the Southern Alberta Council on Public Affairs (SACPA).
The public lecture, titled Alberta's Tax Regime is the Lowest in Canada - Is a Revenue Reno Needed to Maintain Strong Public Services? explored how Alberta's tax system falls short of every other province in the country when it comes to collecting revenues. Applying the tax system of any other province to Alberta would raise a minimum of $11.2 billion in additional revenues, more than covering the projected $8.8 billion deficit in this year's budget.
The additional revenues raised would protect and revitalize our public services and address many of the current problems associated with our revenue shortage. A universal pharmaceutical coverage could become part of our public health-care system and would be a net saving for Albertans while improving the health of our population. Classroom sizes in our schools have gradually increased over time, so fixing our revenue shortage and hiring more teachers would improve the student-teacher ratio to provide higher quality education for Alberta's children.
There are two clear paths in front of us and Albertans will need to choose one sooner or later. One path is massive cuts to our public services, meaning big drops in the quality and accessibility of our health-care and education systems. Alternatively, our tax system can be renovated to raise significantly more revenue by implementing a sales tax and making changes to our personal income tax system.
For more information about our Revenue Reno campaign, visit www.RevenueReno.ca