“Two weeks ago, this government raised the beer markup in Alberta and announced the creation of a grant program to offset the increase for Alberta brewers,” said Interim Leader and MLA for Calgary-Hays, Ric McIver. “Today, they provided very little detail surrounding this program and how much it’s going to cost taxpayers. Albertans deserve to know how much the net tax increase will be after government has paid the $20 million rebate maximum. This government’s aversion to being honest and up front about their policy choices is something we all should be very concerned about.”
Today’s news release announcing the creation of the Alberta Small Brewers Development Program directed readers to a virtually empty government web page instructing businesses to contact the Agriculture and Forestry department for more information.
“Protectionist actions like this do very little to grow an industry or diversify our economy and risk retaliatory measures from other provinces,” said Economic Development and Trade Critic and MLA for Calgary-Fish Creek, Richard Gotfried. “Raising the markup only to give the additional revenue back in the form of grants creates unnecessary bureaucracy and additional expense for the taxpayer. Considering this government is forecasting a $10.4 billion budget deficit this year, we suggest they focus on making government more, not less, efficient.”