Dire straits

Dan McBride

Dear Mike:
An article in last Wednesday’s edition included the following statement:
“PLT rates have not been adjusted to increase revenue since the 1950s even though wages, cost of living, and property values have gone up.”
Whether intended or not, this statement reads like a government talking point. Increasing property values bring about increased tax revenues—even when PLT rates stay the same—because the rates are applied to the increased property values.
The statement including “even though” implies that somehow tax rates should have to increase to keep up with inflation.
That only would be the case if inflation in property values was less than inflation in the rest of the economy, which is not asserted. The opposite actually is true.
The only reason Wynne is increasing PLT rates is to account for increased government spending (including interest payments on government debt). Those spending increases have nothing to do with increased government services related to cabin ownership or cabin owners.
Cabin owners in Northwestern Ontario pay a lot more in government fees than they did in the 1950s.
For example, an Ontario resident pays over $100 for a three-year fishing licence ($90.64, including the new “Service Fee”) and outdoors card ($11.94), neither of which were required in the 1950s.
The fact that such a PLT increase has not been required since the 1950s, and is being implemented now, just highlights that Ontario is in dire straits because of Liberal waste, mismanagement, and corruption.
Dan McBride
Emo, Ont.