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Tax increases brought in with Alberta budget

Albertans have been hit with almost $1.5 billion dollars in extra taxes and fees in the provincial budget.

A health care premium will be brought in for residents that make over $50,000 a year, but Finance Minister Robin Campbell says it won’t look like it did in the past.

“Which was regressive, and has sizeable administrative costs. We recognize that the old premium resulted in a disproportionate impact on lower and middle income earners. The new health care contribution levy will have a progressive structure, will be based on the individual’s ability to pay, and will ensure that we’re not causing undue hardship for vulnerable Albertans.”

The fuel tax has increased four cents to 13 cents a litre, and cigarettes and alcohol will also cost more, starting midnight tonight.

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Traffic fines will go up 35 per cent, while the health care budget has been cut for the first time in 20 years.

At the same time, no sales tax has been brought in, and the corporate tax is unchanged, while the flat tax is being eliminated so one that charges the wealthy more can be brought in.

A record $5 billion deficit is expected this year.

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