François Legault's CAQ government will release their budget next week amidst much external pressure from the population to better manage immigration, education, and health. One key aspect that's pressuring the CAQ is the Hydro Quebec scandal.
To remind you all, Hydro Quebec has been under intense pressure and scrutiny to pay back the Quebec people, with nearly $1.4 billion in overcharges owed to the population.
TL;DR Consumer protection groups and the Canadian Taxpayer's Federation are pressuring the CAQ government and Hydro Quebec to remove the almost 10% tax on hydro services. This news comes after a highly controversial few months for Hydro Quebec, as they still owe over a billion in overcharges to the Quebec people.
Today, a week before Legault's government will announce their budget, the Union des consommateurs Quebec and the Canadian Taxpayer's Federation are pressuring Hydro Quebec and the CAQ to abolish the 9.975% TVQ tax on hydro services.
According to Vivianne de Tilly, an analyst for the Union des consommateurs Quebec, hydro is "an essential right" for all Quebeckers and that it's only logical to abolish the extra tax on energy. The Union claims that the abolition of extra sales tax to hydro services could result in a savings of $225 dollars per year, per client.
Last year, Hydro sold over $5.6 billion worth of electricity to clients in Quebec, profiting some $3.19 billion dollars.
Should the organization abolish the 9.975% TVQ sales tax, Quebec hydro clients as a whole could see up to $560 million dollars in tax savings per year.
Good news for Quebec residents, the Canadian Taxpayer's Federation agrees with the Union des consommateurs Quebec, saying that abolishing the hydro taxes would be a "step in the right direction". Renaud Brossard, Quebec director of the CTF, says that Hydro Quebec is already a government organization and that double taxation is unnecessary and an imposition to Quebec residents.
The Canadian Taxpayer's Federation, along with the Union des consommateurs, agrees that putting pressure on Hydro Quebec officials and the CAQ government to pay back the billions of dollars that are owed to the Quebec people is necessary for a better and more trusting consumer relationship.
Quebec is among the highest taxed province when it comes to energy consumption. In Ontario, they are taxed nearly 13% but the provincial and federal governments are attempting to mobilize a 5% reduction for Ontario residents for the coming years.
We can only hope that the government balks to external pressure and eases the load for Quebec residents. Also, that finally pay back what they owe us and follow through on their campaign promises. Quebec residents are sick and tired of paying exorbitant hydro prices year in and year out while government officials keep getting rich off our tax dollars.