July 7, 2020

Winnipeg
16° C, Clear

Full Forecast

Advertisement

Advertise With Us

High-income tax hike, controlled spending part of Manitoba NDP campaign plan

Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 8/8/2019 (333 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

Manitoba NDP Leader Wab Kinew speaks to media following the delivery of Manitoba's 2019 budget, at the Legislative Building in Winnipeg, on March 7, 2019. Manitoba New Democrats are promising to raise income taxes on high earners, boost the minimum wage and implement modest health care spending increases if they win the Sept. 10 provincial election. THE CANADIAN PRESS/David Lipnowski

Manitoba NDP Leader Wab Kinew speaks to media following the delivery of Manitoba's 2019 budget, at the Legislative Building in Winnipeg, on March 7, 2019. Manitoba New Democrats are promising to raise income taxes on high earners, boost the minimum wage and implement modest health care spending increases if they win the Sept. 10 provincial election. THE CANADIAN PRESS/David Lipnowski

WINNIPEG - Manitoba New Democrats are promising to raise income taxes on high earners, boost the minimum wage and implement modest health-care spending increases if they win the Sept. 10 provincial election.

The Opposition party released broad strokes of its campaign platform Thursday, with a promise to reveal details later. The document includes plans for a higher tax rate on people earning more than $250,000 a year.

"I feel like if you earn a quarter of a million dollars a year in Manitoba, you didn't do that by yourself. You benefited from having infrastructure, from health care," NDP Leader Wab Kinew said.

"And I think that you should feel good about contributing back to ensuring that the next generation has a strong health-care system, has the infrastructure that they need to grow the economy in the future."

Kinew said the NDP looked at raising corporate income tax as well, but decided against it in order to remain competitive with other provinces. Instead, the platform promises a tax cut for small businesses. The threshold at which they start to pay income tax would rise to $550,000 from $500,000.

The 17-page platform promises to boost the minimum wage to $15 an hour from the current $11.35, and to implement an unspecified price on carbon. The Progressive Conservative government withdrew a planned $25-per-tonne tax, prompting the federal government to impose its tax that will rise to $50 per tonne by 2022.

Much of the NDP's focus will be on health care. The platform pledges to reopen two hospital emergency departments that the Tories recently closed in Winnipeg. A NDP government would also hire more nurses, fund more hospital beds and increase spending on addiction treatment and health prevention, Kinew said.

The NDP said the health-care changes would cost between $30 million and $43 million a year, an increase in the health budget of less than one per cent.

The NDP would also lift a public-sector wage freeze that the government imposed, although the platform does not include any cost for that measure.

Kinew said the NDP would balance the budget by 2024 — the same time frame promised by the Tories — while also raising welfare rates, boosting funding for municipal transit and limiting post-secondary tuition increases.

The Tories called Kinew's plan unreliable. Finance Minister Scott Fielding pointed to the last NDP government, which missed promised deadlines to balance the budget despite raising the provincial sales tax, the fuel tax and other levies.

"The NDP cannot be believed on things like balanced budgets. We know the track record that they have," Fielding said.

Recent opinion polls suggest the Tories continue to lead their opponents province-wide, but the race is tighter in Winnipeg, where health-care changes have been more pronounced.

Premier Brian Pallister has yet to formally launch the election campaign and must do so by Tuesday under provincial law.

Advertisement

Advertise With Us

Your support has enabled us to provide free access to stories about COVID-19 because we believe everyone deserves trusted and critical information during the pandemic.

Our readership has contributed additional funding to give Free Press online subscriptions to those that can’t afford one in these extraordinary times — giving new readers the opportunity to see beyond the headlines and connect with other stories about their community.

To those who have made donations, thank you.

To those able to give and share our journalism with others, please Pay it Forward.

The Free Press has shared COVID-19 stories free of charge because we believe everyone deserves access to trusted and critical information during the pandemic.

While we stand by this decision, it has undoubtedly affected our bottom line.

After nearly 150 years of reporting on our city, we don’t want to stop any time soon. With your support, we’ll be able to forge ahead with our journalistic mission.

If you believe in an independent, transparent, and democratic press, please consider subscribing today.

We understand that some readers cannot afford a subscription during these difficult times and invite them to apply for a free digital subscription through our Pay it Forward program.

The Free Press will close this commenting platform at noon on July 14.

We want to thank those who have shared their views over the years as part of this reader engagement initiative.

In the coming weeks, the Free Press will announce new opportunities for readers to share their thoughts and to engage with our staff and each other.

You can comment on most stories on The Winnipeg Free Press website. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or digital subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

Have Your Say

Comments are open to The Winnipeg Free Press print or digital subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to The Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

By submitting your comment, you agree to abide by our Community Standards and Moderation Policy. These guidelines were revised effective February 27, 2019. Have a question about our comment forum? Check our frequently asked questions.

Advertisement

Advertise With Us