No exit tax for Ont truckers

TORONTO — It’s official.

When the Ontario government eliminates the multi-jurisdictional vehicle tax on July 1, as the province moves towards the HST, truckers won’t have to pay any exit tax.

That announcement was part of the 2010/2011Ontario budget released yesterday, and Ontario Trucking Association (OTA) chief David Bradley says the organization had lobbied hard for the measure.

Commented Bradley: “We are very pleased by this; it should help a lot of carriers.”

Other than that, the only other truck-specific part of the budget was a commitment of more than $2 billion to the provincial highway system over the next year.

Specifically, the government will be expanding to four lanes the 100-km section of highways 11/17 between Thunder Bay and Nipigon and that construction will begin this year.

Mostly though, Bradley said in a statement issued Friday, the budget contained few surprises.

The government’s plan to take seven years to eliminate its $21.3-billion deficit was well known before the budget. The fact that this huge deficit would mean few if any new policies or programs was also widely expected.

The government did re-confirm that it would follow through on previously announced corporate income-tax-rate cuts with the rate dropping from 14 percent to 12 percent this year and 10 percent in three years.

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