Community Services Minister John Streicker said the Yukon government estimates the territory’s municipalities will get a total of approximately $300,000 back from a carbon tax rebate in 2019, while Yukon First Nations are expected to receive a total of approximately $60,000. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)

YG confirms carbon tax rebate for municipalities and First Nations

‘I’m sure we will get information out in time for before the carbon price starts to be charged’

The Yukon government estimates the territory’s municipalities will get a total of approximately $300,000 back from a carbon tax rebate in 2019. Yukon First Nations are expected to receive a total of approximately $60,000.

At the recent Association of Yukon Communities annual general meeting the government confirmed what Premier Sandy Silver suggested earlier this year — that First Nations and municipalities will get money back as part of the Yukon Liberal government’s plan to return all they get from next year’s coming federal carbon tax to Yukoners and Yukon businesses.

Community Services Minister John Streicker said municipal governments make up about 2.5 per cent of the overall fossil fuel purchases in the territory.

That will equal approximately $300,000 in carbon tax costs when the federal government implements a $20/tonne tax in 2019, he said. The First Nations’ cut will equal approximately $60,000.

“We will rebate all of that to them,” Streicker said.

At the AGM Premier Sandy Silver announced that flying within the territory would not come with a carbon tax.

Ottawa has already said flights between the Yukon and other jurisdictions are not going to be part of the carbon tax. But “domestic aviation was originally considered to be part of it all,” Streicker said.

Streicker didn’t have any specifics of what the territorial government’s rebate plan will look like.

At the meeting, AYC members passed a resolution calling on the territorial government to clarify how much tax the municipalities would be getting back.

“Carbon tax will place an undue financial burden on municipalities that is counter-productive to investing in energy efficiencies and strategies that would reduce their carbon footprints,” the resolution says, adding that the municipal grant has just been extended without taking into account those extra costs.

Dawson City mayor Wayne Potoroka said he wasn’t expecting to hear details of how the rebate is going to work at the AGM.

“It was really good news to get that commitment that we’re going to be included in a rebate for any carbon tax that’s taken away,” he said.

The sooner municipalities know more about the impact of the carbon tax, the better, Potoroka said.

For smaller communities budgeting starts late summer, he said. Unlike the territorial and federal governments that have a fiscal year that starts in April, municipalities set their budgets based on the calendar year.

“Every municipality will have a provisional budget by Dec. 31 and that’s a budget that basically says we can prove that our expenses will not exceed our revenues,” he said.

“Then you have a couple of months in the new year to actually set by three readings of a bylaw your fiscal year budget.”

The Opposition has accused the government of providing no new details at the AGM and withholding information.

“Municipalities need this information to help them budget for the future, and withholding it from them is not only unfair, it’s disrespectful,” interim Yukon Party leader Stacey Hassard said in a press release.

The government is working on the rebate mechanism, Striecker said.

“We’re well aware of everybody’s timelines and I know that when he was in Ottawa recently he had more conversations with the feds about it. I’m sure we will get information out in time for before the carbon price starts to be charged.”

Streicker said the carbon tax is designed to be an incentive for Yukoners to use less carbon. While the government promised to return 100 per cent of the money to Yukoners it doesn’t mean every dollar will go back to the exact person who spent it, he said.

Contact Ashley Joannou at ashleyj@yukon-news.com

carbon taxYukon government

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Premier Sandy Silver, left, and Yukon’s Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Brendan Hanley speak at a COVID-19 update press conference in Whitehorse on Nov. 19. On Nov. 24, Silver and Hanley announced masks will be mandatory in public places as of Dec. 1, and encouraged Yukoners to begin wearing masks immediately. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Masks mandatory in public places starting on Dec. 1

“The safe six has just got a plus one,” Silver said.

Dr. Brendan Hanley, Yukon’s chief medical officer of health, speaks at a press conference in Whitehorse on March 30. Hanley announced three more COVID-19 cases in a release on Nov. 21. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Three more COVID-19 cases, new exposure notice announced

The Yukon’s Chief Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Brendan Hanley, announced three… Continue reading

Yukonomist Keith Halliday
Yukonomist: COVID-19 strikes another blow at high-school students

They don’t show up very often in COVID-19 case statistics, but they… Continue reading

The Cornerstone housing project under construction at the end of Main Street in Whitehorse on Nov. 19. Community Services Minister John Streicker said he will consult with the Yukon Contractors Association after concerns were raised in the legislature about COVID-19 isolation procedures for Outside workers at the site. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)
Concerns raised about alternate self-isolation plans for construction

Minister Streicker said going forward, official safety plans should be shared across a worksite

Beatrice Lorne was always remembered by gold rush veterans as the ‘Klondike Nightingale’. (Yukon Archives/Maggies Museum Collection)
History Hunter: Beatrice Lorne — The ‘Klondike Nightingale’

In June of 1929, 11 years after the end of the First… Continue reading

Samson Hartland is the executive director of the Yukon Chamber of Mines. The Yukon Chamber of Mines elected a new board of directors during its annual general meeting held virtually on Nov. 17. (Joel Krahn/Yukon News file)
Yukon Chamber of Mines elects new board

The Yukon Chamber of Mines elected a new board of directors during… Continue reading

The Yukon Hospital Corporation has released its annual report for 2019-20, and — unsurprisingly — hospital visitations were down. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Annual report says COVID-19 had a large impact visitation numbers at Whitehorse General

The Yukon Hospital Corporation has released its annual report for 2019-20, and… Continue reading

Whitehorse City Hall. (Joel Krahn/Yukon News file)
City hall, briefly

A look at decisions made by Whitehorse city council this week

City council was closed to public on March 23 due to gathering rules brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. The council is now hoping there will be ways to improve access for residents to directly address council, even if it’s a virtual connection. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Solution sought to allow for more public presentations with council

Teleconference or video may provide opportunities, Roddick says

Megan Waterman, director of the Lastraw Ranch, is using remediated placer mine land in the Dawson area to raise local meat in a new initiative undertaken with the Yukon government’s agriculture branch. (Submitted)
Dawson-area farm using placer miner partnership to raise pigs on leased land

“Who in their right mind is going to do agriculture at a mining claim? But this made sense.”

Riverdale residents can learn more details of the City of Whitehorse’s plan to FireSmart a total of 24 hectares in the area of Chadburn Lake Road and south of the Hidden Lakes trail at a meeting on Nov. 26. (Ian Stewart/Yukon News file)
Meeting will focus on FireSmart plans

Riverdale residents will learn more details of the City of Whitehorse’s FireSmarting… Continue reading

The City of Whitehorse is planning to borrow $10 million to help pay for the construction of the operations building (pictured), a move that has one concillor questioning why they don’t just use reserve funds. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)
Councillor questions borrowing plan

City of Whitehorse would borrow $10 million for operations building

Most Read