British Columbians celebrate Tax Freedom Day nine days earlier than 2000



    VANCOUVER, June 19 /CNW/ - Tax Freedom Day falls on June 16 in British
Columbia, nine days earlier than 2000 when BC experienced its latest Tax
Freedom Day ever, according to The Fraser Institute's annual Tax Freedom Day
calculations.
    "British Columbia has implemented significant tax relief in recent years.
As a result, British Columbians now celebrate Tax Freedom Day much earlier
than they did in 2000," said Niels Veldhuis, The Fraser Institute's Director
of the Centre for Tax Studies.
    Numerous tax reductions in BC since 2001, including two large personal
income tax cuts and a series of important business tax relief measures, have
resulted in an earlier Tax Freedom Day.
    "B.C. now enjoys one of the lowest tax burdens in Canada," Veldhuis said.
"This is a dramatic change from 2000 when Tax Freedom Day fell on June 25 and
was the third latest in Canada."
    In 2007, British Columbia has the fourth earliest Tax Freedom Day in
Canada, behind Alberta (June 1), and Prince Edward Island and New Brunswick
(June 14).
    Since there is also a question as to whether natural resource royalties
are actually a tax or simply the conversion of an asset (natural resources
such as oil and gas) into an income stream for the province, The Fraser
Institute provides two sets of Tax Freedom Days calculations for provinces
with significant natural resources.
    In B.C.'s case, when natural resource revenues are excluded from the
calculations, Tax Freedom Day arrives on June 10th, the second earliest Tax
Freedom Day in Canada behind only Alberta.
    Independent research organization The Fraser Institute calculates Tax
Freedom Day to provide a comprehensive indicator of the total amount of taxes
paid by the average B.C. family to all three levels of government: federal,
provincial, and local.
    The taxes used to compute Tax Freedom Day include income taxes, property
taxes, sales taxes, profit taxes, health, social security and employment
taxes, import duties, license fees, taxes on the consumption of alcohol and
tobacco, natural resource fees, fuel taxes, hospital taxes and a host of other
levies.
    In 2007, the average B.C. family (with two or more individuals) will earn
$81,239 and pay a total of $36,919 in taxes, for a total tax bill amounting to
45.4 per cent of its income.
    "If you look at the average British Columbian family's total tax bill,
each and every dollar they earn before June 16 would be required to pay the
taxes owing to all levels of government. It takes until June 16 before they
begin earning money for themselves," Veldhuis said.
    On a national basis, when tax levels and incomes are averaged for all
Canadians, Tax Freedom Day falls on June 20, four days earlier than 2006 when
it fell on June 24.
    The latest Tax Freedom Day in Canadian history was in 2000, when it fell
on June 25. Tax Freedom Day decreased to June 17 in 2001 before steadily
advancing to June 24 in 2005 and 2006.
    "It's virtually impossible for the average British Columbian to know how
much they truly pay in taxes. The aim of Tax Freedom Day is to give people a
true indication of the amount of money we pay in taxes each year," Veldhuis
said.
    British Columbians can calculate their personal Tax Freedom Day using The
Fraser Institute's Personal Tax Freedom Day Calculator at
www.fraserinstitute.ca. The report, Canadians Celebrate Tax Freedom Day on
June 20, is also available at www.fraserinstitute.ca.

    
    Tax Freedom Day - Province by Province
    --------------------------------------
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Province  AB   NB    PEI   BC    MB    ON    NS    SK    QC    NL  Canada
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    2007
    Tax     June  June  June  June  June  June  June  June  June  July  June
    Freedom   1    14    14    16    16    19    19    22    26     1    20
    Day
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    

    The Fraser Institute is an independent research and educational
organization based in Canada. Its mission is to measure, study, and
communicate the impact of competitive markets and government intervention on
the welfare of individuals. To protect the Institute's independence, it does
not accept grants from governments or contracts for research. Visit
www.fraserinstitute.ca





For further information:

For further information: Niels Veldhuis, Director of the Centre for Tax
Studies, The Fraser Institute, Tel. (604) 714-4546, Email:
nielsv@fraserinstitute.ca; Dean Pelkey, Associate Director of Communications,
The Fraser Institute, Tel: (604) 714-4582, Email deanp@fraserinstitute.ca

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