NDP’s ongoing legal battle with brewers costing Albertans millions (Guest: Bo Vitanov, Artisan Ales)

April 10th, 2019

29 mins 23 secs

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About this Episode

The Notley government spent Tuesday afternoon at the Alberta Court of Appeals making the case for why they shouldn't be held responsible for their unconstitutional actions against private businesses.

It all started in late 2015 when overnight, the Alberta government raised the beer tax on out-of-province beers by up to 166 per cent.

Two Canadian brewers, one based in Saskatoon and the other in Toronto, took the Alberta government to court, arguing that the tax hike amounted to an interprovincial barrier to free trade which was a violation of the constitution.

After three years of legal wrangling, a court ruled in favour of Great Western Brewing and Steam Whistle Brewing, awarding $2M total in restitution to the two companies.

Consequently, Alberta taxpayers are on the hook to two out-of-province companies because the NDP thought they could do things that were not allowed.

But instead of cutting their losses, the NDP continue to drag these two private companies back to court to appeal the restitution order.

My guest tonight suspects the NDP don't want to be associated with the bad optics of a two million dollar payout and a court loss on the eve of an election. And she should know, since she fought the same battle against the unconstitutional tax hike, only she did it before a trade tribunal — and she won.

Joining me tonight to discuss the Notley NDP’s latest attack on private enterprise is Bo Vitanov of Calgary's Artisan Ales.

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