Mr. Speaker, it is a real honour to able to represent my beautiful community of Langley—Aldergrove and share with the House a perspective of what I am hearing from the community on the growing debt that we are hearing about from the government.
The government is defending the fact that the debt is growing and growing. The last Liberal speaker highlighted that the B.C. carbon tax is going to be providing hope for the next generation. However, this is not what I am hearing from British Columbia residents. The question has come out about the $35 a tonne, and what percentage it is. I was asked by a constituent if I realized what we were paying in the form of a tax. Is it 5%, 10%, 15%, 20%? What is the percentage that we are paying on the energy, on the carbon, on the natural gas in British Columbia? Most Canadians, in fact, everyone I have asked after meeting with that constituent said that they had no idea.
Therefore, we asked Canadians to check on their bills. In British Columbia, natural gas is provided by FortisBC, which has it listed on the bottom of the bill. I would ask anybody in the House, or any Canadian watching, what they think the government is endorsing as its model, its plan, for taxation on carbon. We are told that it is $35 a tonne. Last year, it was $30 a tonne, but $35 this year, and every year it goes up another $5 a tonne. What does that mean in a tax? People do not understand, and we do not know. I did not know. However, when we checked the bill, it is 112%. Last year, at $30 a tonne, it was $72%. Can members think of this in any other country in the world?
The Liberal government is bragging saying that it is providing great leadership, and the great leadership is being provided by a 72% tax on carbon last year. This is what the Liberals are saying is going to provide hope to the next generation. This year, on April 1, the carbon tax on energy, on natural gas, in British Columbia is 112%. On April 1, just a few months from now, it will go up to $40 a tonne. It will be over 155% that the government will be charging on energy. That is what $40 a tonne means to British Columbians, and that is what the government is saying is the hope for the next generation. It will be putting debt upon debt with a growing interest rate and uncertainty in the economy. That is not hope.
However, this is what the government does. It says one thing and does something else. The Liberals promise one thing and do something else. When we actually dig down, open the curtains and look at the Wizard of Oz who is pulling the rods, this is what we get with the government. It says one thing and does another, and it is hurting Canadians. It is hurting this generation. It is hurting the economy. It is hurting confidence in the economy. We are seeing this now come out.
The Liberals have been in government for three years, and in three years they have broken promises and made a growing mess. I am hearing from the young, middle-aged and middle-income. I am hearing from a full spectrum of the economy, from my constituents and even the youth who are getting fed up with the government. They do not trust the government. There is an uncertainty with the government. Canadians are getting more and more desperate and looking for a change in government, because the pathway that we are on is not sustainable.
Before I was elected federally, I was a bureaucrat for a few years. Before that, I was an entrepreneur, a business person. Therefore, I know what it means to take a risk. I was a business person for 25 years, and it is hard to make a buck. People who work hard and take a risk and hire people are needed. They are the economic engine of this country. That is what the government has said and the Liberals know that to be true.
We need to create an environment in this country where people are willing to invest and take that risk, where there is a possibility of a profit, where they do not have a government calling them tax cheats and where Canadians are willing to be fair and pay their fair share of tax.
I have just shared with my colleagues the shocking news of what the Liberal carbon tax actually equates to in the form of tax, that being 112% tax on energy. I encourage people watching to go and check their bills. People do not realize that natural gas right now is not that expensive. It is a very clean energy source. However, who in the world, in good conscience, could charge Canadians 112% tax? That is what the Liberals are saying is leadership, world leadership. It amounts to tax, tax, tax.
I have been in this House since 2004. What a great honour to be here. In those years, I have heard over and over again that the Liberals love taxes. They will say whatever Canadians want them to say to get elected. However, it is a great honour to be here, to represent our communities. Everyone of us, I am sure, realizes that great honour but we have a responsibility along with that honour, to represent well and make sure that we make this country better, stronger, with a better future for this generation and generations to come.
Not keeping our promises and putting growing debt on this country is not leaving the country in better shape than when we came. It has been three years of a four-year term of this Parliament. This Parliament began in 2015 and will end in 2019. Less than a year from now, Canadians will be going to the polls to vote.
Canadians are realizing what promises were made by the government, such as having a balanced budget. There was going to be a temporary phase with a maximum $10 billion spent that one year. Within three years, it would be balanced. Why did the Liberals make that promise? Canadians realized that it is not sustainable to continue to go into deficit budgets. A business cannot operate like that. If a business year after year after year had deficit spending, was spending more money than what was coming in, the business would go bankrupt. We see that. It is a proven fact. Again, a family cannot spend more than what is brought in.
It is the same thing in our country. The government knows that and that is why, leading up to the 2015 election, the Liberals promised that they would balance the budget. Have they kept that promise? No, they have not. Have they promised to be a world leader in putting a price on pollution? They have said they are going to do that. They put a price on pollution of 112%. Next year it will be going up to 155%. I cannot imagine any country in the world that would brag to say it is providing world leadership while we have the highest rate of taxation on any country on this earth on energy, 112%, and next year going up to 155%.
That is not what the government promised. The government promised change, but not this kind of change. We will be approaching, in less than a year now, an election where Canadians are going to be faced with a decision. The expression says, “Fool me once, shame on you.” Canadians are not going to say, “Fool me twice, shame on me.”
I have listened to the youth. I have a youth advisory board I listen to. They are not happy with the government. They are not happy with what the government has done to their future in saying no to pipelines, to the point where we are not getting world prices for our natural resources. That is their future being squandered. It is our youths' future that is being squandered by the government borrowing against them. They did not give their credit card to the government, but the government has taken their credit card and is mounting debt on their credit card. They are fed up.