New Year Message For Harper: How About Giving Northerners A Break?

2011 has just begun and the media are already talking about sky-rocketing bonuses for CEOs while average Canadians are under increasing economic strain. Timmins-James Bay MP Charlie Angus says its time Stephen Harper started focusing on the needs of average Canadians rather than just making life easier for large corporate interests.

A good way to start would be for Harper to reinstitute the popular ecoEnergy retrofit program.

"This program worked. It helped middle-class Canadians to cut down on their heating bills. And it was good for the planet. Why did this government kill such a helpful program?"

Angus says it's clear that Harper will move quickly to help large corporate interests but he just doesn't seem to want to move to ease the burden on Canadians paying high heating and gas prices.

"This is Canada -- it gets cold here in January. And yet, Canadians are carrying more and more of the tax burden by being gouged on their home heating and being gouged at the pumps."

In the fourth quarter of last year, Canada's biggest banks made a whopping $20 billion, thanks, in part to huge tax breaks from the Conservative government. Meanwhile, Ontario citizens paid an extra $890 million in HST just at the pumps alone. Angus says 2011 must be the year we begin to close the growing affordability gap.

"I don't want to live in a country of the super-haves and the have-nots. Canadians aren't asking for a free ride. They are just asking for a fair break. It's time Stephen Harper listened to them."

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