Alberta’s nearly two-year-old NDP government has begun delivering rebate cheques designed to buffer the majority of the province’s citizens against the effects of a provincial carbon tax introduced at the beginning of the year.
The rebate program will give $200 to a single adult earning under up to $47,500 a year, The Canadian Press reports. Couples making as much together as $95,000 a year will receive cheques for $300. Qualifying parents get another $30 per child—up to $120.
The Alberta median family income in 2014, according to Statistics Canada, was $100,750 (that number may have changed in the wake of the downturn in the oil industry). The individual mean income, however, was only $29,300, and according to CP, some 60% of all Albertans will qualify for the full rebate. Only about a third, “those who make more than $51,250 a year, [will] receive no rebate at all.”
The provincial rebates will go up next year, and thereafter, in step with planned increases in the carbon tax. Since January 1, it has bumped the price of gasoline by 4.5¢ a litre, diesel by 5¢, and raised most home heating bills.