PEI

Province announces financial incentives for Islanders to offset gas tax

The government of P.E.I. has announced new financial incentives for Islanders to offset the provincial gas tax.

Most of the initiatives to take effect Jan. 1

As of Jan. 1, 2019, Islanders will receive free, new and renewed driver’s licences. (Graham Hughes/Canadian Press)

The government of P.E.I. has announced new financial incentives for Islanders to offset the provincial gas tax.

Finance Minister Heath MacDonald announced the initiatives in the legislature Thursday.

Some of these initiatives will be effective Jan. 1, 2019, and include:

  • Reduced transit fees. The province will subsidize T3 Transit to reduce monthly passes, tickets and fares by 10 per cent.
  • Free driver's licences. Drivers will be required to renew their licences every five years instead of every three. 
  • Free vehicle registration for electric vehicles and plug-in hybrid-electric vehicles.
  • Reduced hybrid vehicle registration. Non plug-in hybrid vehicle owners will pay 50 per cent less.

Islanders will also get a break on registration, paying 20 per cent less to register vehicles starting next April. 

MacDonald said the financial incentives are to offset an increase at the pumps because of the Gasoline Tax Act.

The province announced in October it was being forced by Ottawa to implement a provincial carbon tax on motor fuels, but said it would mostly offset that tax by reducing its own provincial excise tax on fuels.

"It is those operating vehicles that will feel the impact of the carbon levy the most and we are returning the levy proceeds to these people," MacDonald said.  

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