by Morinville News Staff
Premier Jason Kenny is calling the Alberta Court of Appeal’s decision that the federal carbon tax is unconstitutional, a “great victory for Alberta and for Canadian federalism.”
The Court voted 4-1 Monday that the federal legislation that brought the tax into play erodes provincial jurisdiction.
“We promised Albertans we would fight for them, and today we succeeded,” Kenney said in a media release Monday. “We will not tolerate Ottawa determining the future of Alberta’s economy. This consumer carbon tax is now illegal; therefore, we expect the Government of Canada to comply with the order of the Court today, remove the federal carbon tax on Albertans and immediately refund any and all tax collected to date.”
Kenney went on to say he believed the provinces are best situated to make policy decisions for their citizens.
“The ‘Ottawa-knows-best’ attitude of the federal government disrupts the constitutional balance of our federation and undermines our right to manage our own affairs,” Kenney said. “In their decision, the Court of Appeal called the effort to impose this punishing tax on families filling up their gas tanks and heating their homes a ‘constitutional Trojan horse.'”
Alberta argued in the proceedings that the Constitution does not permit the federal government to put a provincial minimum price on carbon. The government argued that by imposing a one-size-fits-all carbon tax, Ottawa ignored constitutional provincial authority to legislate in ways that reflect local conditions and circumstances.
“We are defending our province’s interests,” Kenny said. “Albertans expect us to promote jobs and champion our economy. This is what we are doing by fighting the federal carbon tax, which punishes people for heating their homes and driving to work but does nothing to reduce emissions.”
The Canadian Taxpayers Federation also celebrated the Alberta Court of Appeal’s Monday decision.
“This is a big win for taxpayers in Alberta and across Canada,” said CTF’s Alberta Director Franco Terrazzano. “The carbon tax is all economic pain without the environmental gain, and it’s great to see Alberta’s courts ruling against Ottawa’s heavy-handed and unconstitutional carbon tax.”
Alberta will advance their position in the Supreme Court of Canada in March during appeals of Saskatchewan and Ontario’s decisions on the federal carbon tax.