The role of the federal government in affordability | Opinion

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Almost daily, I hear serious concerns from local citizens about the significant impact that current petrol and diesel prices are having on many families.

As I recently reminded our Liberal government in Ottawa during the debate on the Budget Implementation Act (BIA), in many parts of our region, driving a vehicle is the only way for some citizens to access to health care and medical appointments or to the nearest school.

High gasoline and diesel prices also have another negative impact.

As I have also heard from many small and medium business owners, the shipping and transportation costs to receive the goods have also increased significantly.

This, in turn, means prices need to be raised at a time when groceries and other items are already under cost pressure due to high rates of inflation.

Ultimately, high gasoline and diesel prices are having a negative impact on Canadian households and also causing economic damage.

That’s why literally every other G-7 country has governments that are actively implementing measures to try to provide cost relief to citizens on fuel prices to help increase affordability and reduce inflation.

Unfortunately, here in Canada, our Liberal government, supported by the NDP, refuses to take similar action to help citizens facing these devastating fuel prices.

This week, as the Official Opposition, we tabled a motion in the House of Commons proposing the following measures:

Temporary suspension of the GST collected on gasoline and diesel

Suspension of the carbon tax

Elimination of tariffs on fertilizers

Enable the free flow of goods across the Canadian border

Supporting the revival of the tourism sector

Protect the jobs of federally regulated employees by immediately removing all federal COVID-related restrictions

Curb speculation in the housing market by immediately launching a national public inquiry into money laundering.

This motion proposed measures to help increase affordability and fight inflation, just as other G7 countries are doing.

Unfortunately, the Liberal government rejected this motion with the support of the NDP.

I say unfortunately because it is estimated that inflation alone will cost the average Canadian $2,000 more this year.

While these proposed measures will not address all of these additional costs, they would be a step in the right direction to ensure that citizens keep more of the money they earn in their household by sending less of it to Ottawa.

My question this week:

Do you think the federal government should play a bigger role in trying to increase affordability and, at the same time, do more to reduce inflation?

I can be reached at [email protected] or call toll-free 1-800-665-8711.

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