MacFarlane: Don't raise tax on bottles

Published on July 21, 2014
A report suggests raising the tax on bottles.
FILE PHOTO

report released by the Environment Department calls for higher taxes on beverage bottles, but Progressive Conservative Economic Development and Environment critic Karla MacFarlane says Nova Scotia’s can’t afford it. 

“Nova Scotia families can’t afford to pay more,” said MacFarlane. “Our taxes are already too high. Raising taxes on everyday items like bottles when too many Nova Scotians are already struggling to make ends meet would just be another example of the Liberals’ fiscal incompetence.”

The Revising Our Path Forward Report, released by Nova Scotia Environment in April 2014, recommends altering the bottle-tax structure to enable future increases. Currently consumers pay 10-cents per bottle, 5 cents of which is retrieved through returning the bottle to a recycling depot. The proposed changes would allow for increases to the per-bottle tax.

MacFarlane wants Environment Minister Randy DeLorey to guarantee there will be no tax hikes on beverage bottles.

“Increasing this tax would immediately impact families at the grocery store,” said MacFarlane. “The Liberals need to finally put consumers and their families first and not raise the beverage bottle tax.”

An early version of this discussion paper was reported on last year. That draft suggested raising the bottle tax, but it was dismissed by the NDP government. The report included an example of doubling the fee on glass bottles to 20 cents per bottle.