Monday, December 31, 2007

Harpie touting his GST cut today while GTA taxes rise


Harpie is going to be in the GTA today revisiting the cheesy photo op that launched the pathetic GST cutting that sees most people getting, well, bupkus of significance in their daily lives. But as a report today tells us, "Mr. Harper's promise to reduce the GST to 5 per cent during the 2006 campaign proved both popular and smart political theatre." Well, let's think about that, Torontonians, shall we? That report goes on to tell us this:
Most Canadians will see only small savings of about $200 on purchases over the coming year. But the savings on big-ticket items like homes, appliances or automobiles will be dramatic: $5,000 on a $500,000 home, for instance.
$5,000 on a $500,000 home you say? Well not if you live in the GTA, ironically one of Harper's choice locations for such photo ops. The land transfer tax Toronto council had to enact to make up for a $500 million budget shortfall kicks in soon, vitiating any benefit from a GST cut:
As if the incoming flurry of holiday bills wasn't enough, Torontonians should brace themselves for a slew of extra charges over the next few months as the new taxes and fees adopted in 2007 kick in.

Buying a home and owning a car will cost more starting Feb. 1, when the new land transfer and motor vehicle registration taxes take effect.
...
Under the new land transfer tax approved by city council this fall, prospective homebuyers have until tonight to sign a purchase agreement or until Feb. 1 to close the deal to avoid paying up to 2 per cent in taxes.

Some realtors predict the market will slow down as a result of the levy, which will add thousands of dollars to the cost of most houses.

For example, it will cost the buyer of a $375,000 home an extra $4,100.
So you see, when Harper and Flaherty and the gang start talking up the great GST savings homebuyers are going to get...that won't apply to the GTA. Maybe someone should ask him, once again, while he's out there in Mississauga at his little photo op why his government couldn't have instead given 1 cent of the GST to the cities?

Don't let the snow job fool you today.