TORONTO, Ontario, May 30, 2011 ( – Ontario’s Progressive Conservative party pledged Monday to bring in income-splitting for tax purposes as part of their platform for the province’s upcoming election. The plan is one that pro-family groups have long been encouraging to correct a tax system that unjustly discriminates against families with a single breadwinner.

The party plans to allow couples to share up to $50,000 of their household income for provincial tax purposes, in a proposal openly modeled after the federal Conservatives “Family Tax Cut”.

“I believe it’s unfair that the government judges two families – both with the same income – on how they have organized their homes, and then charges them different taxes,” said Ontario PC leader Tim Hudak.  “There really is a family budget, and our proposal will allow all couples to share up to $50,000 of their income to help lower their tax burden.”

The Ontario Tories say that a typical family earning $70,000, with one spouse earning $50,000 and the other $20,000, would reap tax savings of $476.  A single-income family earning $70,000, on the other hand, would save nearly $1,400.

When Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced his Family Tax Cut on the campaign trail in March he won praise for the concept. He was also criticized because the income splitting change would only take effect after the government had balanced the budget in perhaps four or five years.

Because of the delay, Phil Lees, head of Ontario’s pro-life Family Coalition Party, called Harper’s proposal “a promise to continue abusing [single-income] families for another 5 years.”

But Hudak plans to bring in provincial income splitting after forming the government, although it is not clear how early on. Hudak also says that if his party wins the upcoming election and replaces the McGuinty led Liberals, they will call on Prime Minister Harper to implement federal income splitting sooner.

While the federal plan will only apply to families with children under 18, the Hudak plan would apply to all couples regardless of family size. It would, for instance, help couples to recover a little from decades of financially supporting their children who have left home or who may still need help through several years of university.

The Ontario election is scheduled for October 6, 2011.


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