Taxes could have bigger impact on Albertans in 2016

There could be a little less spending money in your pockets in 2016, especially if you have more of it than others.

More money means more taxes, but there are also impacts across the economic spectrum

Paige MacPherson of the Canadian Taxpayer Federation says Albertans are going to be paying more to governments this year. (CBC)

There could be a little less spending money in your pockets in 2016, especially if you have more of it than others. 

The Canadian Taxpayers Federation says many Albertans will be paying more taxes this year thanks to provincial and federal hikes. 

"It's 100 per cent clear that Albertans are going to be  shouldering a higher tax burden than the year before," said Paige MacPherson with the CTF.

Provincially, those making over $125,000 per year will face income tax increases of between 0.5 and 1.25 per cent, depending on their income. Federally, anyone making over $200,000 per year will be dinged an additional four per cent. 

Shifting money around 

MacPherson doesn't think it's sound policy to increase taxes on the wealthy, saying it's an ineffective way to raise government revenues because people are adept at shifting money around. 

"That's exactly why it just doesn't generate the amount of revenue that politicians are hoping that its going to," she said. 

The middle class, however, will get some relief. Those earning between $45,000 and $90,000 will get a federal tax break topping out at $680 per year, while provincial taxes will remain steady at 10 per cent. 

Increases to provincial taxes on carbon — now at $20 per tonne — might also impact consumers, but the province is planning to offer rebates for the bottom 60 per cent of income earners

Then there are increases to provincial sin taxes on things like alcohol from last fall, and an increase on insurance premiums that will take effect in the spring. 

On the local level, Calgarians are facing a 3.5 per cent property tax increase, as well as a jump in fees for water and sewer services, as well as garbage and recycling pick up. 

On the plus side, the city has used a portion of its surplus to freeze fees for transit and rec centres. 

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