Carbon tax, CPP premiums among fees rising in 2021 for Sask. residents

·2 min read

The federal carbon tax is set to increase from $30 per tonne to $40 in 2021.

The Saskatchewan government is trying to fight the tax in court, with the Supreme Court of Canada expected to make a decision this year.

SaskPower will be increasing its carbon tax collection from customers as a result. Customers will get a 10 per cent rebate on their power bills from the provincial government until November 2021, fulfilling a Saskatchewan Party election promise.

The Saskatchewan government has also raised its provincial carbon price for large emitters to $40/tonne from $30/tonne. However, companies that are not compliant with emission standards won't have to settle their bill until next year.

Large emitters in Saskatchewan operate under a different carbon-pricing system that exempts them from the federal carbon tax. This is because their emissions are priced under provincial standards.

The province said the money will be collected in October 2021 and will go into the Saskatchewan Technology Fund, one of three compliance funds under the province's Prairie Resilience climate change plan.

Canada Pension Plan contributions rising

All income tax brackets and tax credit amounts will also be indexed by one per cent in 2021. The provincial government said this matches inflation.

The provincial government is also reinstating the Active Families Benefit — where families can apply for a tax credit of $150 per year — as of Jan. 1, 2021, fulfilling another election promise. The Saskatchewan Party had cut the benefit in the 2016-2017 budget.

Canada Pension Plan contributions are also rising. The Canadian Federation of Independent Business president said it will hit workers harder because of the pandemic.

Building fees, and light and power increases in effect for Saskatoon

Saskatonians won't see any changes in the fees for leisure centres, public golf courses, indoor rinks, public pools and the Nutrien Playland at Kinsmen Park. Public transit is also remaining the same.

Building fees are going up for homes by $0.09 per square foot, while the flood protection program levy will go down by about $1.1125 per water meter per month.

Saskatoon Light and Power will go up $0.07/kWh as a result of the federal carbon tax, the city said online. Water and wastewater rates are set to increase by 3.9 per cent. However, customers will receive a rebate similar to the one SaskPower is handing out.

Regina changes to be discussed with city budget in March

Regina residents will see an increase in their utility fees by three per cent as of Jan. 1, 2021. This is the last change in a three-year increase the previous council approved in Dec. 2018.

Other fee changes are set to be discussed by city council along with the 2021 budget in March.