SASKATOON – With a provincial election a month away, party leaders are heating things up and adding to a pile of promises. On Friday, the NDP pledged to lower taxes for the middle class and trim utility costs.The party’s leader, Cam Broten announced a small tax break for 70 per cent of families in the province. If the NDP is elected, the average household could see $90 of savings a year.The party proposes the three per cent earning more than $175,000 will make up for the difference by paying extra in income taxes. Story continues below
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“I hear frustration and disappointment from people all over the province who say that a select few benefitted from the boom and the rest of us are just paying more,” said Broten.FULL COVERAGE: Decision Saskatchewan 2016Twenty-nine per cent will see no change to their income taxes.Broten also promised to use Saskatchewan’s Crown corporations to slash the cost of utilities.“We’ll match or surpass Manitoba’s lowest cost utility bundle by 2020. Combined, our changes to income taxes and utility bills will put hundreds of dollars in the pockets of everyday families making life a bit more affordable,” said Broten.In response to the announcement, the Saskatchewan Party says the NDP’s promise does not provide 70 per cent of people with a tax break.“A lot less than 70 per cent of Saskatchewan people pay income tax to begin with,” said chief of operations and communications Kathy Young in an email.“Our government took 112,000 lower income earners off the tax rolls so they don’t pay any provincial tax any longer. We increased basic and spousal income tax exemption amounts twice and indexed the exemption by inflation every year,” she added.The Saskatchewan Party also says the low utility cost promise comes with a big price tag in the long-term.
© Shaw Media, 2016