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Taxes cost families more than food, clothing, shelter: study

VANCOUVER (NEWS1130) – If your household budget was a pie, who would grab the biggest piece? It wouldn’t be you!

A new report from the Fraser Institute finds the average Canadian family gives most of its household budget to the government.

The think tank’s Canadian Consumer Tax Index finds the average household in this country spends 42.7 per cent of its income on taxes; that’s more than what it spends on on food, shelter, and clothing, which is only 36.9 per cent combined.

Study co-author Charles Lammam says the family tax burden has been increasingly steadily since the 1960s, and that’s not even factoring in deficits.

“When governments run deficits, they ultimately have to be paid for by deferred taxes, so the concern then is is that going into the future with governments continuously running deficits, the growth of the tax bill will continue.”

Lammam says most of our tax money goes toward health care and he feels we’re not getting enough bang for our tax buck.

“We wait longer for surgery, we don’t have access to the same technologies as other countries, or the same number of doctors… and this is comparing Canada to countries that have universal healthcare.”

The index also finds that while average family incomes have gone up in the past five decades, the average tax bill has increased even more. In 1961, the average household tax bill was only 33.5 per cent.