Alberta sales tax opposed by small business group
The Canadian Federation of Independent Business says the introduction of a sales tax will hurt businesses across Alberta.
"Any location that is anywhere near a provincial border, they can tell you that not having a sales tax in Alberta is definitely part of the Alberta advantage," said Richard Truscott, CFIB director for Alberta and the Northwest Territories.
"And to meddle with that is going to have a real impact on the bottom line of many of those businesses."
Many participants at an economic summit in Calgary suggested a provincial sales tax could help mitigate the province’s expected $6 billion deficit and reduce its reliance on fluctuating resource revenues.
Premier Alison Redford said her government has no plans to introduce a sales tax but Truscott believes its coming next year.
"It’s funny because if the government continues to ask the same questions over and over and over again about do we need new taxes," he said.
"It seems like they're just hoping that at some point Albertans are just going to throw up their hands and say, ‘OK yeah, let's have a sales tax.’"
Truscott believes the government should focus more on putting a cap on spending.