No new taxes are expected on gas for cars, trucks and buses, and special help was to be offered for low-income Canadians to buffer the higher prices they will have to pay for goods and energy.
The new details confirmed by CBC News sources Wednesday include:
Across-the-board personal income tax cuts of around 10 per cent for all three tax brackets, as people pay more for heating costs, food and other items.
A moratorium on new federal taxes on aviation and diesel fuel for the first year of the program.
Extra help for low-income Canadians in the form of tax credits so that they will get money back to help pay for higher cost of goods, even if they report no income on their tax returns.
Additional help for rural and northern Canadians to help soften the blow of possibly higher costs.
Assistance for non-profit groups that may face a crunch — for example, women's shelters that have to pay significantly more to heat their premises.
New tariffs on goods imported from countries that have no carbon taxes, as a way to even out higher costs for similar goods produced in Canada.
Enriched tax breaks for companies using and inventing green technologies, to encourage research and development as well as investment.
I thought it might be premature to roll out the idea of a carbon tariff now, but it's an excellent counter to the economic apocalypse the Conservatives will predictably argue. That's how you "lead the world" Mr. Baird, you actually do something, which gives Canada the leverage to force others to comply. This idea effectively blunts the competitive disadvantage argument, while at the same time offers an incentive to get others on board. Anybody claiming that a carbon tax will move more jobs out of Canada, have lost a key talking point.
When Rubin of the CIBC first came out with carbon tariff plan, I emailed it too a few Liberals, hoping the party would consider the idea as part of the plan. In my opinion, the idea of a carbon tariff may be the most important element in lowering the world's emissions. Nice to see this Liberal plan has a sense of the big picture on global warming.
A few more details:
According to party insiders, the shift would impose a tax of $10 per tonne of greenhouse gas emissions in the first year, rising to $40 per tonne in the fourth year.
The tax, which would be applied at the wholesale level, is expected to generate up to $15 billion per year in revenue by the fourth year.
Among the tax measures, insiders say Dion's plan would reduce the tax rate for Canadians in the lowest tax bracket to 13.5 per cent from 15 per cent. That amounts to a 10 per cent tax reduction.
The tax rate for the two middle tax brackets would be cut by one percentage point, to 21 per cent and 25 per cent. That would amount to a tax reduction of five and four per cent respectively.
No reduction is proposed in the top tax rate for high-income earners.