“I am writing to convey Alberta’s strong objections to your budget proposal to raise the capital gains inclusion rate. It adds a further layer to the expanding array of federal policies harmful to savings and investment and, by extension, Canadian productivity and our future standard of living.

“Your proposed tax increase is also damaging and unfair to the many small business owners who planned for retirement and are relying on the assets they built up and held in their small businesses. I urge you to reconsider the fairness of a retroactive tax increase on their savings and investments. These individuals and families do not have the luxury of a taxpayer-supported defined benefit pension plan that you and your cabinet colleagues have.

“Like other provinces, we are also frustrated that the federal government proposed such a major change to the shared federal-provincial tax base without consultation or engagement. Measures like these are forced upon provinces and undermine our pro-growth economic policies that seek to propel our whole country forward.

“Canada’s lacklustre productivity is among the biggest challenges facing Canadians, and a serious threat to our continued prosperity and high standards of living. While you argue that Canada continues to attract significant investment and that our Marginal Effective Tax Rate is still the best in the G7, you cannot deny that this tax increase will further chip away at our tax advantage. And, more significantly, it builds on the piling of federal policies harmful to investment. These policies are weakening our standing in the world, and the standard of living of our people.

“As has been noted by the Canadian, Ontario and Alberta Medical Associations, your tax increase also comes at a time when the Canadian healthcare system is under extreme pressure and our ability to attract and retain physicians is a serious challenge. Raising taxes on these professionals will only exacerbate the crisis and put more financial strain on provincial governments.

“On behalf of the Government of Alberta, I am calling on you to cancel your proposed tax increase on capital gains. Canada needs policies that promote investment, innovation, and risk-taking, not new taxes that hinder productivity.”