Lethbridge Herald (Newspaper) - February 20, 1973, Lethbridge, Alberta
The Letlibridg e Herald VOL. LXVI - No. GO LETHBRIDGE, ALBERTA, TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 30, 1973 PRICE: 10 CENTS THREE SECTIONS - 36 PAGES ily budg has tax cuts, pension hikes OTTAWA (CP) - "It's a family budget for the average Canadian family." That was finance Minister John Turner's description of his Monday night budget in which he sliced personal income tax by at least five per cent, increased old age pensions and lowered sales taxes and customs duties on numerous consumer items ranging from cosmetics to fruit and vegetables. The budget measures, lie told a news conference following his appearance in the House, increase the take home pay of average Canadians and put more money in their pockets. And he said the benefits go to those who need them most - more than 70 per cent of the tax cuts to families where the breadwinner makes less than $10,000. In a unique move designed to protect wage earners from the inroads of rising prices, income tax exemptions and rates will be adjusted starting in 1974 to compensate for inflation. Canada will become one of the few countries in the world with such a system. Progressive Conservatives immediately noted this was part of their last election campaign. Mr. Turner said his expansionary budget - designed to boost the economy and produce jobs - is a calculated risk. "We recognize that we are running a risk and that the risk is on the side of overshooting," he told the Commons in referring to the possibility of stimulating inflation, a serious factor in the economy for the last several years. Risk worth it "That is a risk worth taking at this time in the Interest of dealing more effectively with unemployment." Another risk he didn't mention directly was the political one of a minority government that must gain support from some opposition members to gain budget approval or face defeat. The official opposition leader, Robert Stanfield, quickly said the budget fails to provide a coherent approach to the country's economic problems. But David Lewis, leader of the New Democratic Party, said Mr. Turner, had gone a long way toward, meeting his party's demands. The immediate reading of political observers is that Mr. Turner has produced a budget that is politically acceptable by enough opposition members to get approval. Since the new Parliament met Jan. 4 after the Oct. SO election - most inconclusive in Canadian history - the minority Liberal government of Prime Minister Trudeau has been kept in office through support of the NDP. But Mr. Turner reaffirmed measures from his May, 1972, budget - never approved before the October general election - to reduce corporation tax levels and provide fast write-off for tax purposes on new equipment purchased by manufacturing and resource in-- dustries. Tliese were measures the NDP attacked during the election campaign as part of the so-called corporate rip-off-or lucrative concessions to big business - and Mr. Turner left open the procedural method by which he will ask the House to approve these measures. Finance department officials said they will be brought before Parliament at a time and in a form to "best expedite their treatment in the House." The implication is that he can bring them in separate from his Monday budget proposals, if necessary. That would mean that the government survives on its budget proposals with NDP support. But it might face defeat at a time of its own choosing on the decision to confront the NDP with the leftover 1972 budget resolutions, calculating that the Conservatives will jettison original support for them to take the opportunity to force a government defeat. Delicate balance These were the highlights of the budget, clearly ex-pressing a delicate balance between political expediency and economic policy: Income tax for individuals cut by five per cent, with a minimum of $100. That reduction effective Jan. 1, 1973; replaces a cut of three per cent that lapsed last Dec. 31 but the stipulation of a minimum means a tax reduction of much more than five per cent for many wage earners. - Income tax exemptions raised and to be adjusted annually, along with rates, starting in 1974 to compensate for the effects of inflation, - Old-age pensions to be raised April 1 to $100 monthly from $86.61 due at that time and war veterans allowances to be raised by a similar amount. - The ,10-per-cent luxury tax removed from cos-children's clothes and footwear and near-food products such as candy and soft drink. - The 10-percent luxury tax removed from cos metics, toilet articles and time pieces of under $50 wholesale. - Import duties reduced on a wide range of consumer products. - Family farms to be free of capital tax gains when transferred from one generation to another. - Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Quebec and the four Atlantic provinces to receive more generous federal tax payments. - A retroactive tax break for small corporations, on investments, with a promise of more help later. All told, the budget would leave the government with a 1973-74 deficit of $975 million, largest since the' $2 billion in the last year of the Second World War. Mr. Turner told the House the purpose of the budget is, first and foremost, "to bring about a substantial reduction in unemployment." He predicted that by this time next year, 300,000 more persons will have full-time jobs. (Other budget stories on pages 2, 15, 20) , Down they went Recuperating in North Vancouver hospital after 150-fcot fall in Capilano Canyon are Jackie Mollis of Toronto (top) and Dottie Cocker of Ottawa. They spent five hours waiting for rescue or death after tumbling from the famed Vancouver suspension bridge. Sportsplex ball rolling An appropriate sequence of priorities leading up to construction of the Canada Games Sportsplex will be presented to city council next Monday. A note of urgency and an expression that "the arena will be built with or without the community college" came from council Monday as a committee was formed to start the ball rolling toward construction of the 5,000-seat complex. Aldermen Cam Barnes and Vaughan Hembrqff will work with City Manager Tom Nutting and Bob Bartlell, community services director, to come , up with a schedule to get the ar�na underway. Mayor Andy Anderson told council the Lethbridge Community College is awaiting word from the minister of advanced education, Jim Foster, concerning a possible $885,000 grant toward the cost of the facility. Highways Minister Clarence Copilhorne has also been consulted by the college with reference to a proposed freeway Laotian on 24th Ave. S. The route of the freeway could have a bearing on the exact location of the arena on the site southwest of 28th St. S. and Scenic Drive, Mayor Anderson said. Aid. Vera Ferguson suggested the city can't wait for the college to get approval of the grant but must act now to find out how the arena can be financed by the city alone. "If the college decides to come in with us at a later date, then we can consider it." Mr. Nutting said preliminary plans for the $2.8 million building should be ready for council, by next Monday. Phillips, Barratt, Hillier, Jones and partners, Vancouver consultants, prepared the plans. Mr. Bartlett has said construction of the arena could begin by May 1 and be completed by fall of 1974. Dumping charges hurled by U.S. truce signed VIENTIANE (AFP) - The Laotian government and the Pathet Lao initialled a ceasefire agreement here today, both sides announced. A Pathet Lao source said the agreement ending the war and creating n new national union government was initialled by Premier Souvanna Phouma and Pathet Lao representative Phoumi Vongvichit with the ceasefire coming into effect at noon local time Thursday. This was confirmed by Finance Minister Sisouk Na Champassak, WASHINGTON (CP) - The United States treasury department accused Canadian aluminum manufacturers today of dumping aluminum ingots on the American market, in a case involvinig close to $200 milion a year in sales. A treasury announcement said the department has "reasonable cause" to believe that aluminum ingots from Canada are being sold, or are liable to be sold, at less than fair value-normally, the price on the U.S. or Canadian market. The decision means that the. department will suspend appraisal of the value of the ingots, pending a ruling on whether the duty paid should be increased. The U.S. tariff commission must begin an investigation now to determine whether American industries are being hurt. Unless such injury is proved, increased duty is not required. However, imports of Canadian aluminum may be affected by the uncertainty caused by withheld appraisal. MAY BE LARGEST CASE The treasury department said the case may be the largest of its kind ever taken up in the U.S. Although no year-long figures were released, the department said that during a 20-month pe- Government's hold on office assured OTTAWA (CP) - New Democrat leader David Lewis said today that his party will support the minority Liberal government's new tax-and-tariff-cut-ting budget. With 31 seats, the NDP hold the balance of power in the House and its support for Finance Minister John Turner's Monday budget temporarily assures the government's hold on office. Mr. Lewis announced his party's intention to back the budget following a morning caucus meeting. Alberta reaction Mr. Lewis indicated shortly after the budget speech was read Monday night that the government had come a long way in its budget toward gaining NDP support. Tax cuts, tariff reductions and an increase in the old-age pension were something his party had fought for for a long time, he said. Mr. Lewis told reporters there was much he liked in the budget and that while his party remained poised to vote against corporate benefits announced in last May's budget, "they are not part of this budget." The clear indication was that the NDP could continue to support the Liberals until the government brought in bills to reduce corporation taxes and provide fast depreciation allowances. Conservative Leader Robert .Stanfield said he was flattered the government had borrowed his proposal to take inflation into account when computing income taxes. But he said the budget lacked an effective attack in the rising cost of living although proposed tariff changes might have an effect in some sectors. Social Credit spokesman Gil-les Caouette, subbing for his ailing father, also said the budget offered no solutions to economic problems. The 15 Social Credit members in the Commons would support most of the budget provisions "but we'll have severe criticisms on some items," he said. Marcel Lambert (PC-Edmonton West), the only opposition member to reply to Mr. Turner in the Commons, said the government was claiming to put an additional $1.3 billion in the pockets of Canadians with the various tax cuts. In reality, he said, the government would take an additional $1.7 billion in taxes from Canadians. riod ending last August, ingots valued at .about $350 million were imported into the U.S. from Canada. The chief supplier was understood to be the Aluminum Co. of Canada (Alcan). The name of the American complainant was not released but published reports have indicated it was the Aluminum Co. of America (Alcoa). Beer ads on air EDMONTON (CP) - Reaction to the 1973-74 federal budget by the four major political parties in Alberta Monday right was as varied as their doctrines. Provincial Treasurer Gordon Miniely' said the budget "on balance was favorable" and Social Credit leader Werner Schmidt described it as a "preservation" budget rather than an election one while the Liberal and New Democratic Party leaders had qualified praise. Mr. Miniely, whose party has 49 of the 75 seats in the legislature, said the Alberta government had been urging Ottawa to reduce personal income taxes and eliminate the capital gains tax on family farms. There were no real surprises "except perhaps for the small amount of increase in the old p.ge pension" and he felt reduced personal income tax was preferable to reduced corporation tax because it means more consumer spending. NOT ENOUGH Mr. Schmidt, who leads the 24-member Social Credit delegation although he doesn't have a seat in the house, said the budget gave no indication how Ottawa plans to reduce unemployment or how it expects to combat inflation. "With continued increases in revenue and the largest deficit budget ever, in terms of spending, one can question the sincerity of the government in coming to grips with inflation, vparticularly when one of the biggest spenders is the government." Mr. Schmidt was pleased to see the increase in old age pensions "but I doubt whether it is enough." Grant Notley, the NDP leader who is his party's sole representative in the legislature, warned that if the federal Liberals don't back down on corporate tax concessions, the national NDP might not support the minority government. Provincial Liberal leader Bob Russell was predictably enthusiastic about the budget. "It will bring immediate help to those who need it most - the pensioners, the veterans and the young families," said Mr. Russell, whose party is not represented in the legislature. EDMONTON (CP) - The Al-bfcrta government announced Monday it wiil allow restricted advertising oi' wine and beer products on radio and television. Don Getty, intergovernmental affairs minister, told the legislature that details of the restricted advertising have not been worked out. Also, there was no indication when the ads would be allowed. The request for wine and beer ads, he said, had come from the Broadcasters Association of Alberta. S�en and heard About town * ? ? TJECUPERATED Sid Salt-er relating that he was too ill Friday to watch Edge of Night . . . hockey coach Harry Hoekscma breathing easier after Wade O'Sullivan scored 12 goals to lead his team to victory . . . amateur radio operator Walter Manlcy claiming, "I sure like to ham it up." Liberals now on right track TORONTO (CP) - The federal budget will have a moderate impact on the Canadian economy, some economists say, and it may not be enough to take a big slice out of unemployment totals. However, they agreed Finance Minister Turner's address ilonday night headed the government in the right direction. Doug Sherbaniulc, director of the Canadian Tax Foundation, said it provides "a necessary but moderate stimulus to the economy without at the same time creating a major problem of inflation for the future." Its social measures-personal income tax cuts, sales tax reductions and higher pensions-are desirable, needed and beneficial, said Douglas Peters, economic adviser to the Toronto Dominion Bank. But Henri Mhun, chief economist of the Provincial Bank of Canada, doubted there would be a significant drop in the unemployment rate. There would be some improvement, but nothing like the 300,000 jobs the federal government is predicting. "Mr. Turner didn't go far enough," he said. Lorie Tarshis, economics professor at the University of Toronto, said unemployment in Canada is "tragically high" and further doses of "this desirable expansionary medicine" are needed. EXPANSION NEEDED He said "there's nothing Canada needs more now than an expansionary fiscal policy." He welcomed what he referred to as a departure from conventional anti-inflationary policies of tight money and higher taxes. International competition was increased by doing away with some import duties and sales taxes. -He and Mr. Sherbaniulc both viewed government withdrawal from certain sales tax areas as a way of redistributing more purchasing power to the poor. The 12-per-cent tax on children's clothing and footwear was eliminated. Prof. Tarshis said the five-per-cent cut in personal income tax, with a minimum of $100 and maximum of $500, also favors the low-income earner. Mr. Peters said that as desirable as the social measures are, the budget is not particularly stimulative to the economy. Although the government estimated a budget deficit of $975 million, the deficit on national accounts was only $640 million and was less than the national accounts shortfall. of the 1972 budget. Two killed in shootout LONDON (CP) - Three armed intruders, their faces covered with stocking masks, invaded the Indian high commission building today, beat and tied up employees, and then shot it out with British police. Two of the raiders were killed and the third injured, Scotland Yard said. A Yard spokesman said the injured raider was arrested. One policeman, an Indian official and wo bystanders were treated for shock and minor injuries at nearby hospitals. The raiders were of Indian or Pakistan origin, all men in their 20s, police said. Inside <3? Classified ............. 16-19 Comics ................... 6 Comment .............. 4; 5 District .................. 3 Family .................. 14 Local News ...........11, 12 Markets ................. 20 Sports ................. 8, 9 Theatres ................. 7 TV ........................ 7 Weather .................. 2 LOW TONIGHT 30-35 HIGH TUES.. 45-50; MAINLY SUNNY, MJLD.