Now that Alberta's first NDP majority government is in power, Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi has raised the possibility of implementing a so-called "negative income tax."
That's because -- like many individuals in Premier Rachel Notley's cabinet -- new finance minister Joe Ceci is a former "progressive" activist. In such circles, the "negative income tax" is a policy that's been advocated for years. It would combine existing government benefits into a single guaranteed annual income.
Asked about what actions he expected Notley's government to take, Nenshi told reporters:
I am really, really interested if he will bring that to bear in terms of some really significant changes to the taxation system that would really help us manage poverty in a brand new way." (...)
As to what kinds of changes he figured Ceci might float, Nenshi said: “A negative income tax, maybe.”
One Calgary group, Momentum, is currently pushing an "Alberta Child Benefit, that would pay parents in households earning less than $41,000 annually a total of $1,300 per year per child":
"We’ve only looked at it for families,” said the group's publc policy advisor Mike Brown, “But the logic is sound for families, so I think we can extrapolate it for all Albertans and make sure that no one has to live in poverty in Alberta.”
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