Editor's note: Mr. Stacey writes in response to a previous letter Tax surcharge needed for employees on sunshine list
I wish to respond to Robert Nelly’s letter about the “Sunshine List” and his proposal for a surtax.
He clearly failed to account for inflation in the 26 years since 1996. If he had bothered to research it, he would have found that the cumulative inflation since then totals just under 90%.
Therefore, someone who was earning $53,000 per year in 1996 and was given no raises other than the cost of living increases would now be earning over $100,000. Does he think that person should have paid a surtax in 1996 as well as this year since they’re on the “Sunshine List”?
This list is totally misleading and has not been adjusted for inflation in far too long.
I would also assert that the vast majority of people on that list: doctors, lawyers, professors, and all manner of professionals; have achieved their goals through hard work and dedication. They’ve worked their way through years of post-secondary education, often accumulating huge debts to be paid off once they start making the salaries they deserve.
I would ask Mr. Nelly: “ Just how much of what these people worked for, do you feel you’re entitled to?” Because that’s what personal taxation is - taking money from working individuals to provide social services to all, including those who can’t afford them. I certainly believe we should all pay our fair share, but surtaxes on high-wage earners are punitive and patently unfair, and they already exist. Just take a close look at your Income Tax form.