In a mature society, it is accepted reality that taxes pay for things we want, things like decent health care, mental health services, proper care of our elderly and our veterans. Taxes fund education and provide support for those less able to help themselves or who need temporary assistance such as the unemployed.
You cannot fund key services and give tax cuts. Those on high incomes have a social responsibility to contribute more.
Therefore, why, in the B.C. provincial budget for 2015, has the government removed the top tax bracket for people earning over $150,000?
Funding of health care and education is not keeping up with demand despite projections of population growth for the province. The government can dress up the numbers with all the “statistics” they like, but every day we also hear of a broken system of failing schools, poor health care, lack of services for the elderly and inadequate mental health support services.
Ending the child support claw-back is a tiny drop in the ocean. B.C. remains the only province with no proper poverty reduction plan, which is shameful.
Additionally, this budget takes no action on climate change, which we cannot continue to ignore. The carbon tax was supposed to be revenue neutral and, yet, is currently giving away more in tax cuts than it collects in revenue.
We can waste time debating climate change or we can start planning for problems it will bring such as changes to water table, agricultural ability and damage from severe weather patterns. It could also provide the impetus to explore new economic and job opportunities in renewable energy sources and new technologies rather than continuing to flog the old horses.
Having a surplus is no good thing when we have many families living below the poverty line and we are not funding key public services.
Blaeberry Valley, Golden