March 17, 1926 (15th Parliament, 1st Session)


George Brecken Nicholson

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. G. B. NICHOLSON (East Algoma):

Without going into the question at length, I desire to make one or two observations. In relation to the resolution itself, and the remarks of my hon. friend from North Winnipeg (Mr. Heaps) as to whether the tax had been looked upon as a special preserve of municipalities, I think what the hon. member who moved the resolution had in mind was this-and I believe is the fact-that prior to the war no income tax was levied by any except municipal authorities. There had been no federal income tax, with the possible exception of British Columbia, and I am not certain with regard to that. No provincial income tax was levied prior to the war. There is a very good reason for that, and a very definite reason why this form of taxation should be the preserve of the municipalities. Neither municipal bodies nor provincial bodies have the right in Canada to levy indirect taxes. They must secure all their revenues by the method of direct taxation, while the federal authority is the only one that has the right to levy anything in the character of an indirect tax. Prior to the exigencies of the war I think it was generally looked upon as the right of municipalities to levy income tax. I do not know the situation in Manitoba or any of the other provinces, but so far as Ontario is concerned my hon. friend is entirely misinformed when he intimates that it is optional with the taxpayer whether he shall pay his taxes on assessed value or on his income, whichever is the higher. The fact is that if he derives an income from taxed property he pays a tax on that property and does not have to pay a second tax.

Topic:   'COMMONS
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