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Brantford, ONA motion passed by the City of Windsor earlier this week, calling for higher levels of government to make hydro and utilities HST exempt, is setting an ideal example that should be highly relatable to families in Brant Riding.

“Windsor City Council has made it clear that this is an issue for all families and that families should come first.  Brant Riding’s struggle is a similar one,” said Marc Laferriere, Federal NDP Candidate for Brant. “They have shown us that they are prepared to stand up to higher levels of government to do what’s best for their community.”

On July 1st of 2010, the addition of the HST added 8 per cent to the cost of utilities across Ontario. The motion, put forth by Councillor Jo-Anne Gignac, seeks the assistance of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities and the Association of Municipalities of Ontario in lobbying the government for the removal of the HST from home utilities. The motion received unanimous approval from the members of council.

“Brant Riding has seen incredible job losses in the past four years,” said Laferriere. “Too many families in our community will be struggling to heat their homes over the next several winters. They need our help and removing the HST from home utilities is an important and practical way to provide assistance.”

It was announced on Thursday that the provincial government will drop electricity rates in Ontario by 10% starting in January. However with utility costs expected to escalate at an alarming rate in the next five years, as the province lessens their dependence on coal-burning plants, the reduction offered by the Ontario government isn’t significant enough.

“We’re making our case for Stephen Harper’s Conservatives to drop the 5% federal sales tax on your home heating,” said Laferriere. “It’s a cold country and they just don’t seem to get that.  In the coming weeks we will be announcing a local initiative to help gently remind Mr. Harper and his MP’s that the average Canadian is tired of being gouged on necessities.”

 “Early estimates suggest that hydro rates will increase by 46% over the next five years,” said Laferriere. “How do we expect struggling families, the unemployed, seniors, and the working poor to survive such an increase?” 

Listen to Marc & NDP Leader Jack Layton discuss the home heating issue and many others by clicking the picture below:

Listen!

Find out more about the Federal New Democrats home heating plan at: www.HeatYourHome.ca

 

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