Taxing Water and Other Harebrained Schemes
So the City of Toronto is thinking about taxing bottled water. Well, it was, until it realised that the vast number of retailers selling bottled water would make the tax nearly impossible to collect. And, oh yeah, the tax would also likely be illegal. The City of Toronto Act does allow the city to impose its own taxes, but it prohibits sales taxes outside of alcohol, cigarettes, and entertainment. So what is the city thinking?
Yes, Toronto is faced with a severe budget shortfall but taxing WATER? I understand that many people feel bottled water is unnecessary. Some even call the bottled water trend dangerous and irresponsible. Point taken. However, I really don't see people filling up bottles at home and carrying them around with them. What happens when those bottles run empty? I don't know about you, but I don't see too many public drinking fountains on the streets of Toronto. Would we have to resort to sticking bottles in the Dundas Square fountains?
Besides, even if you were planning on only drinking tap water, the city plans to raise the price on doing that too!
If the city is really thinking of adding on a (possibly illegal) tax, why not tax pop? People need water to properly hydrate themselves, especially on hot days, but Coke or Pepsi are hardly necessities. A tax on pop may even lead people to drink more water, since it would be cheaper than its evil carbonated big brother. And while we're at it there are some "Super Value Menus" that could use a few extra taxes. Again, tax products that aren't necessary and can lead to illness. Isn't that why alcohol and cigarettes are taxed higher than other goods?
Clearly taxing water is not the solution. But what is?
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