stan cropped webAn open letter to the Minister of Industry responsible for the Competition Bureau and the Minister of Consumer Affairs:

I am annoyed and perturbed that over many years your governments and the preceding ones have seemingly condoned a manner of price fixing.

I’d like to know why, when I bought gas this weekend in Toronto at $1.23.4 /litre, and filled up in Bellevile, Ont., just two hours away from the GTA, I paid only $1.18.4 /litre at the same brand, Petrocan?   As well, I took some photos of Canadian Tire and others that were offering gas at $1.16.4 /litre.  Why is that? Do out-of-town gas stations pay less for gas to be delivered to them than their brothers in Toronto?  Or for that matter in Edmonton or in Spruce Grove, Alta.?

And here’s another thing that’s really bothering me.  I’ve examined a chart compiled by Petrocan that lists the taxes charged by the feds and their provincial /territory partners. With all the taxes collected on each and every blessed litre of gas we pump into our cars every week, why do we not see our road structures improved or replaced?  I don’t know about other big cities across Canada, but here in Toronto the road systems are crumbling and in need of major overhauls.

When my wife and I visited Atlantic Canada several years back, we drove the breadth and length of Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island.  Signs abound on Nova Scotia’s highways: “Putting Your Tax Dollars to Work.”  Do any of you ever see signs like that in your province or territory?  Can you tell that I’m angry and fed up?

I’ve been driving all over Ontario and in recent years, mostly here in Toronto. What I see is a vast urban sprawl and the road systems are buckling under the increased burden of thousands of cars and trucks every day.  When one of our previous provincial governments sold off the 407 toll road, I chuckled along with others in my group of friends – what a fiasco. I travel the toll road at least four to eight times a month and am glad for the convenience.  Why not take some of those tax dollars and spread them around and give back to the public?

Why did I address this letter to the above-noted ministries?  Well, for starters, is there a conspiracy going on? Is the oil business not under scrutiny by these ministries? How can the same gas from Alberta, being refined say in Hamilton, be sent to North Toronto and resold at a different price than in Belleville, Ont.?

I say this to my fellow Realtors, call your MP and your MLA representatives, and get a petition up in your city, town or village and write and complain.  We’re being gouged at the pumps.  For an industry that depends on servicing the public, isn’t it time we rose up and spoke our minds about what I deem collusion and unfairness to the public who depends on our wheels to service our clients?

pix for stanI say to those individual governing bodies, go pick on the big guys for a change, not us hard-working agents who help to fuel the economy with all types of real estate sales.

We’re tired as hell about being taxed to death each and every mile. Grrrr!

Yeah, yeah, I know what you’re thinking – Albert, this is the season to be jolly and giving.  Well, I’m not being jolly, but I am giving all of you some food for thought as we approach 2014.

On that note, from my family to yours, I wish you all the best for whatever holiday you celebrate with family and friends. May the coming year bring you all you ever hoped for and more.  And most of all, be of good cheer and be of good health.

I want to thank my long-suffering editor Jim Adair for putting up with my usually late articles and with my spelling/grammar. Well, I am a septuagenarian, you know!

Stan Albert, broker/manager, ABR, ASA at Re/Max Premier in Vaughan, Ont. can be reached for consultation at [email protected]. Stan is now celebrating his 43rd year as an active real estate professional.



  1. I completly agree with you. On an other note I think treb should offer a disciunt card just as politicians have.

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