The Canadian Federation of Independent Business says the federal government has collected $2.5 billion in carbon tax revenue since 2019 from small and medium-sized businesses in Saskatchewan, Alberta, Manitoba, and Ontario but hasn’t seen the 10 per cent rebate it promised. The rebate is for these particular provinces because these are the provinces which have a carbon tax because their environmental actions don’t meet the federal government’s threshold.
Prairie Director of the CFIB, Brianna Solberg, says over $300 million of the $2.5 billion is owed to small and medium-sized businesses in Saskatchewan. She explains that when the carbon tax began, the government promised to return 10 per cent of the revenue to small businesses, farmers, and Indigenous people. The funds are to be returned by the end of March next year, but the CFIB is urging the government to return those funds now because businesses need it now.
The CFIB also wants more clarity on how this is going to be done and is urging the federal government to reject the Senate amendments and pass Bill C-234 to exempt natural gas and propane used for on-farm activities as was originally intended in the Conservative party’s bill.
Back in 2019, the federal government stated that 90 per cent of proceeds from the federal carbon pricing system would go directly to families through Climate Action Incentive payments and the remainder of the proceeds from fuel charge would be returned to help small and medium-sized businesses, Indigenous peoples, farmers, and other recipients reduce their energy use, costs, and greenhouse gas emissions.