Robert Jones on NB Tax Cuts:
Richest New Brunswickers get biggest tax cuts: CBC review
Robert Jones - CBC News
April 28, 2009
The New Brunswick government's income tax reduction plan will give the biggest benefits to a small group of the province's wealthiest citizens, a CBC News review shows.
'It's not many people at that income level and they are getting a great, great savings.' —Roger Haineault, tax specialist
The group, which includes just over 1,300 of the top business executives, medical and legal professionals, senior government officials and retired millionaires will split more than $30 million a year in tax savings when the plan is fully implemented in 2012, about 10 per cent of the entire program.
Finance Minister Victor Boudreau introduced a massive tax reduction program in his March 18 budget, promising more than $300 million in savings for all taxpayers once the plan is fully rolled out in 2012.
But a review of government documents explaining the plan's details and Canada Revenue Agency taxation data for New Brunswick shows that high-income earners will reap the greatest rewards.
Roger Haineault, a New Brunswick tax specialist, said special benefits flow to the high-income group because their tax rates will be cut the most.
"It's not many people at that income level and they are getting a great, great savings," Haineault said.
New Brunswick has four income tax brackets. High-income earners, those making more than $250,000 a year, currently pay most of their taxes inside the highest bracket.
But that bracket is subject to the biggest rate cut under Boudreau's plan — 33 per cent — and high-income earners will save the most as a result. By contrast, the lowest income bracket is being cut by 11 per cent.