Thursday, July 01, 2010

It's Canada Day, we get to pay

Today our time-of-use hydro meter officially kicks in. This does NOT benefit us, in spite of government propaganda to the contrary.

Today our provincial sales tax and federal sales tax are meshed into one harmonized sales tax (HST). Things that never were taxed before, or only had one kind of tax, are now all up to 13%. People with small businesses, like retired people who cut lawns, are now required to charge this tax and to download software to report it. This assumes that the very-small-business owners have a computer to use the software.

This means our hydro and electricity are up 13% in addition to whatever the Smart Meter decides to increase our rates by. This means gasoline is now taxed at 13%.

This means politicians who go on radio shows and start talking about replacing our old freezer with some new programmable one that runs during the off-hours, as a way around the cost of our being soaked by the cost of energy, and who talk about a rapid transit line-to-be-built as a solution to everybody's transit problems, should have their heads examined if they think those are any kind of solutions to the real issue of a bigger chunk of what we live on vanishing into the wall outlets and up the furnace pipes and into all kinds of places it never went before. You take two little kids and a full load of groceries on any kind of public transit and see what you have to say then. Talk to the lawn-cutting guy who has to both charge more and deal with tax reporting, and ask how this benefits him. Watch how the increased gasoline costs drive up the prices of other things not directly affected.

It's Canada Day. Do I sound disgruntled?

I don't think I can afford that long a word any more. You'll have to settle for gruntled.


coffeemamma said...

Are things different in your end of town? Our 'smart' meter won't be activated until sometime next year (they have to wait until everyone in the region has been switched over).

Mama Squirrel said...

We got a notice with our last bill saying that the meters in this part of town were supposed to be ready to go July 1st. I think you have a different provider.

Birdie said...


Sebastian said...

You mentioned the fireless cooker a couple posts back. I wonder how long it will be before someone develops a household water tank that fills in low use times and then pumps out during the day?
Sorry that your politicos are as disingenuous as ours.

Piratemum said...

@coffeemamma and @mamasquirrel - our Time of Use rates kicked in May 1st! I just went and verified and sure enough, it's true. Though we didn't purchase appliances with a 'delay' intentionally, I'm sure glad we did in retrospect. And I've been investigating the haybox idea you posted - I know what we're doing next week! take care and thx.

coffeemamma said...

@piratemum and @mamasquirrel:

The last hydro bill was very confusing, but here's what we understand- May 1st our bill went up, but it was rate hikes, not time-of-use changes. July 1st the bills went up again, but it was HST, not time-of-use changes. There was a newspaper article that explained it better than Hydro did, so I'll send you the link.

Sheesh, why does it have to be so complicated??

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