Raise the royalty rates

Raise the royalty rates The Yukon and federal governments have announced there will be a change in the agreement for sharing resource revenues. Currently, any amount of resource royalties the Yukon earns in excess of $6 million is deducted out of our tra

The Yukon and federal governments have announced there will be a change in the agreement for sharing resource revenues.

Currently, any amount of resource royalties the Yukon earns in excess of $6 million is deducted out of our transfer payments from the federal government.

Under the new agreement, the Yukon could receive more than $40 million in royalties before any money gets deducted from our federal transfer payments.

Well, $40 million is a lot more than $6 million, so let’s all go roll in the dough.

But there is one small problem.

The Yukon hasn’t even been collecting the $6 million, never mind anything above that.

Looking forward, it appears extremely unlikely that the Yukon will ever generate $40 million in royalties thanks to incredibly low royalty rates on mineral resources.

For the budget year 2011/2012 the Yukon expects to get $115,000 in oil and gas royalties and related revenue.

Mineral resources are expected to generate about $1,235,000 in permits, fees, leases and royalties. Of that, less than $20,000 is actually mining royalties, because of the outrageously low royalty charged on placer gold (37.5 cents an ounce, irrespective of the current price of gold).

There are no hard rock royalties paid to the Yukon government, and thanks to a hard rock royalty system that allows companies to write off almost all their expenses it is very doubtful whether the Yukon will see substantial hard rock royalties in the near future.

Chuck in other sources of revenue generation, such as land sales, forest fees and agricultural leases and it looks like the total raised through resource revenue will come in at $1,803,000.

Not even close to $6 million.

And 20 times less than the new cap of $40 million.

If the Yukon does not change its mineral royalties we will not benefit from the new transfer agreement at all. If the Yukon is serious about taking advantage of the new transfer agreement it has to get serious about royalties.

It’s time to apply a respectable royalty on the minerals that belong to all Yukoners. At the moment we are literally giving them away to the mining companies.

Lewis Rifkind, mining co-ordinator

Yukon Conservation Society

Whitehorse

Just Posted

WCC did not have authority to create secure living unit, judge finds

Justice Ron Veale’s decision on petition from former WCC inmate Darryl Sheepway was released Sept. 19

Bagnell concedes Trudeau’s past decisions to wear brown and blackface were racist

‘When we do things, we might not think at first blush that it’s going to offend someone’

UPDATED: B.C. man guilty of first-degree murder in 2017 Ibex Valley homicide

Edward James Penner, 22, was given the mandatory life sentence for the 2017 slaying of 25-year-old Adam Cormack

WYATT’S WORLD

Wyatt’s World

Updated: The Ibex Valley murder trial: what the jury didn’t hear

Some legal arguments were made without the jury present. Those details couldn’t be published until now

Commentary: How Yukon’s federal election candidates would tackle the opioid crisis

Esther Armstrong The overdose crisis continues to have a devastating impact on… Continue reading

Yukonomist: Election 2019: Almost as fun as a hockey pool

The federal election has officially kicked off, and just in time. The… Continue reading

Yukon skateboarders compete at Skate Comp 2019

The event featured nearly two dozen skaters from across the territory and beyond

VeloNorth hosts annual YXY Cross cyclocross race

The race included 92 riders — nearly triple last year’s turnout

Court news, briefly

Some recent news coming out of Yukon courts

City council news, briefly

Some of the decisions made by Whitehorse city council Sept. 9

Runners test their mettle at 37th annual Klondike Road Relay

This year’s relay included 197 teams and 1,877 runners

Yukonomist: How the Yukon saved the economy

During the Klondike gold rush, the prospect of free gold drew more… Continue reading

Most Read