38 comments

Government of Ontario To Scrap The Nonsense “Eco Fee”

Other / Canada

eco_fee

Great news! Tomorrow Ontario is announcing plans to drop the intolerable eco fee thats been tacked onto so many products since the first of July! You weren’t aware of the eco fee? Don’t worry a lot Ontario residents had no idea that this was sneakily implemented the same day HST took effect. This eco fee was being tacked onto household cleaners and various other items as a “hazardous disposal” fee.  The fees were ranging anywhere from 1 cent to almost $7!  There was a “pilot” run of this a few years ago for batteries etc and listing them on your receipt but the “new eco fee” that had started July 1st implemented thousands upon thousands of items from drano to glue. 

Why are they scrapping it? Because it was implemented very poorly and the instructions were very vague to retailers. Different stores were charging different prices for the eco fee. Ie. One store would charge 2 cents for drano while another was charging upwards of 10 cents.  Canadian Tire has even refused to charge consumers this fee! Yes you read that right, Canadian Tire stood up for it’s consumers.

I’m all for saving the enviroment but to me this was just a poorly implemented money grab. I’m so tired of being nickel and dimed to death.

Thanks Manzervite for the heads up

(Below In posts I clarified that Canadian Tire announced this on Monday)

Edit* Canadian Tire WILL refund all Eco fees charged since July 1, you just have to bring in your receipt.

38 comments

  1. keeperkyla

    At Canadian tire i got CHARGED for the eco fee on bug spray..i dont know where this is coming from that they stood up and said no…there was even an artical in the toronto sun showing crappy tire charging this fee..

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  2. Sally

    I think just today they announced that they wont keep charging this fee. :)

    “The government’s about-face comes after Canadian Tire announced Monday that it was scrapping eco fees on 8,700 items in its stores, saying the recycling charge is too confusing for customers.”

    Quote from the Star.

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  3. abbasgirl

    I’m cautiously optimistic right now. Some articles on the net are saying Ontario is scrapping it and some are just saying Canadian Tire is. The McGuinty government is not known for making common sense decisions so I think I’ll wait until the official announcement is made before I get too excited.

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  4. abbasgirl

    OK! It’s looking good then! But it would not surprise me at all if I wake up tomorrow and hear on the news that they aren’t really scrapping it after all- just calling it something else. :)

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  5. abbasgirl

    If you bought one of the products which an eco fee applied to at Canadian Tire between July 1 and now, you would have been charged an eco fee. Canadian Tire only announced yesterday that they would stop charging it.

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  6. julyprincess

    Yippee! That’s great…the fee is completely ridiculous. I have paid eco fees bef0re on windshield washers and coolant. I also paid it on a webcam! It’s quite annoyiing when all these charges apply on a product, HST is worse enough. I would rather stores just include the HST in their shelf price so I am not surprised at the till!

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  7. Emily

    Yay! I found it so incredibly ridiculous that we were charging this fee at my store! A lot of our items had the full $7 charge, unbelievable! I actually opted not to buy something because of that stupid fee

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  8. victoria

    so, since they are scrapping it, are we going to get our money back, we paid $30 when we bought our tv..

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  9. Jeff

    Canadian tire over charged on the eco-fee. What are you talking about?
    It even made the news

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  10. mom2twobeauties

    We purchased 3 cans of propane camping fuel at Canadian Tire and we paid $4.95 in eco- fee, So Canadian Tire may have refused but they are charging the Eco-fee anyway.
    However the Govt of Ontario was very sneaky in implementing this new fee without making it public that they would. Come on McGuinty isn’t the HST enough? What else are you doing behind our backs??

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  11. MJ

    I’m glad they’re scrapping this fee. It was too much to add at the same time as the HST. Canadian Tire was charging the eco-fee too, they just decided to stop charging it.
    It would have made alot more sense to me, if they had done it as a deposit…..you get it back when you return the item to the proper place for disposal. The way they did it, it was more of a money grab. You had to pay the fee whether you disposed of it properly or not.

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  12. bambinoitaliano

    They are scraping the eco fee for regular household products not electronics appliances. It’s a separate issue. Most retailer choose to absorb the eco fees which is a smart thing to do politically since no consumers like to see additional charges on their purchase. Did the consumers win this round? Absolutely not! If you are regular shoppers pick a few regular items in the store and memorize their prices. I can bet that within a month or two those prices will go up. It might not be noticeable from 20 cents to a dollar or so pending at what price point the item’s at. It’s just less aggravating to the consumers.

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  13. CarlyinCanada

    Good news…but McGinty will likely think up some other tax grab! We got charged $10 eco fee on our new stereo for our boat! Grrrr!

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  14. Kailey

    We just bought some protector for our deck this weekend and was charged around $3 of eco fee at Canadian Tire. If Canadian Tire is “supposedly” going to stop charging eco fees, I wonder if I can go back and get back my $3. I mean, I bought it literally 2 days ago…if not, I guess I can always return the products and then buy them again…this time, without the stupid fee!

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  15. Louise

    We have all beend conned. This eco ffee did nothing but take the heat off the hst and by taking it away people in Ontario can feel they have won a battle. However the HST is still in place and people are just accepting it.

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  16. Ron

    What about all the other fees from lastyear Like $6.00 on a printer, or how about almost $30 for a desktop/monitor computer?

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  17. Rich

    So all this millions they collected are they going to refund it to everyone ? Someone made a few easy million dollars for doing nothing .

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  18. Donna

    …i bought ant traps too..but think about, even removing it,less than a month after implementing….they made a boatload of cash. a boatload. should be enough to start that fund they were looking at. right? (sarcasm doesn’t carry well on posts..lo)

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  19. brian

    Louise has it right.. this was all just to draw our attention away from the HST and they would have us believe they care what consumers have to say. If they did, the HST would never had happened either. it’s a joke.

    anyone took a look at the price of gas since July 1st? good luck finding it under $1/litre

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  20. trucks12trucks

    I wouldnt have minded the eco fee so much if it had been implemented properly with correct charges. Maybe they can revisit this in the future.

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  21. Chase

    It’s got nothing to do with the HST… the government knows that they can do anything they want with taxes, since us Ontarians won’t do anything about it except moan and whine on the Internet. Where are the protests, the petitions (as with BC), the effort to actually show the government that we seriously think they are wrong, rather than just complaining about paying more cash? I mean the frickin’ Tamil Tigers can shut down half of Toronto for a day when they feel like it, yet a province full of people who are mad about this just grumble and pay up – and the government knows they don’t need to “distract” us, they’ve done this kind of thing a hundred times with the same results.

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  22. Sally

    I def think we could of stood up and do what Bc is doing with the petition for the HST. I signed one last year but nothing ever came of it. Basically once people heard the gov was giving a small amount of money to them they shut up. Its ridiculous.

    I was reading they’ve barely done anything with the money for the 5$ per tire disposal fee! Just sitting collecting interest!

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  23. Janine

    I live in Nova Scotia, we pay 15% HST and have been paying eco fees on stuff for around a year…..we are taxed to insanity here.

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  24. adorita

    I support the eco fee, but really disappointed by how poorer executed it has been. It would be more effective to charge the manufacturer, distributor or wholesaler than to charge a variable percentage on variable price of items from consumers collected by retailer voluntarily. The time spent on calculating and collecting these fees is better used on actually improving our environment.

    You don’t see the composer union go around asking you a penny for every time you buy a copyrighted song, but they do get royalties. They get paid by a bulk calculation from reserved funds paid by the music industry. This eco fee is better administered likewise.

    Anyway, I don’t mind paying for eco fee or HST, but the irrational way it has been charged baffles me. Paying tax is my duty, but the way they are collecting it… it seems that the CRA is spending more money on administration than the increase of collection. I worry that less social benefits comes out of more money and time spent.

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  25. Matt

    A lot of people would spend their time better learning the facts of the issue rather than spewing uninformed vitriol here.

    The fact is that these products cost us one way or another. Toxics in our water, in our soil, and in our air cost us dearly — and we are just starting to clean up century-old contaminants in some cities in Ontario. Wondering why your property taxes keep going up? Look at what your city is spending on remediating brownfields. Wouldn’t it make sense that the price of the actual products that cause these messes included a bit of money to clean up after them, and make sure the products themselves are as clean as possible?

    Unfortunately the agency that put these fees in place was incompetent and overoptimistic. In not making them a mandatory cost added to the shelf price of the products, they caused all this confusion and a massive cost in stopping the program.

    If you’re going to get enraged about something:

    - Get enraged about the loose control over Stewardship Ontario, the agency that was supposed to manage these fees

    - Get enraged at the cost to businesses big and small that have to deal with this mess — including ignorant, unfocused customer rage (see above for examples)

    - Get enraged at the temporary use of ~$5 million in provincial money to cover the eco fees while the program is withdrawn and re-implemented

    - Get enraged at the idiots at the head of Stewardship Ontario and the consultants and analysts they hired — they certainly aren’t earning their fantastic paycheques

    But please educate yourself about the issue before you start complaining about it. Otherwise you run the risk of sounding like a moron, and none of us want that, do we?

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  26. Joy

    If you bought something at Canadian Tire and got charged the fee, take your receipt back, they will refund you the money.
    But don’t get too excited, taxpayers are still on the hook for the 5 million dollars it will cost over the next 90 days of retailers not collecting and submitting these fees to Stewardship Ontario. We just can’t win.

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  27. Bridges_48

    Whens the election?? I can’t wait to show the Ontario Liberals that they have lost my support.. We need better choices.. PC/LIBERAL/NDP pick your poison i guess??

    ECO is good if the monies are allocated. i’d rather it be built into the cost of goods so i don’t see it.

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  28. cheers

    I won’t pretend to know much about the eco fee as I live in la belle province (btw, I have to lol @ the under-$1-per-liter-gasoline-price comment, b/c I think it’s been at least 6 months since we haven’t seen that…). 2 things stand out from the comments so I’d like to voice my opinion about them (and this is an OPINION).

    First, it seems a bit odd to want this fee blended into the shelf price – if I don’t know how much I’m supposed to pay, any retailer could mark up prices by whatever amount, and then blame it on the eco fee (nice way to increase profit without getting railed on, it is after all a gov’t tax). So kudos for trying to be transparent! Is it well implemented/administered/collected? Apparently not, but it’s a start.

    Second thing is the fact that the items the fee is applied to ARE dangerous for the environment. Look at a few stats, you’ll see that the deposit idea is unfortunately a failed concept – people just don’t care enough to bring whatever item back for a few cents. So if that doesn’t work, what do you do? Consumerism pushes us to buy, buy, buy, then discard, discard, discard. Whether it’s tires, electronics, paint, chemicals, they all have to be disposed of somehow. And that somehow costs money, and somebody’s gotta pay for it.

    Please try to remember that we are only visitors here, and your children, grandchildren and all your future generations deserve to have a nice visit too.

    Reduce Reuse Recycle Re-think

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  29. Caro

    cheers said it all. I don’t live in Ontario, I’m from BC. But it seems like better implementation was necessary. There are still a lot of communities without proper recycling programs. Those who live in cities and larger towns/small cities are lucky although people don’t often take advantage of the resources. Again, recycling is not the be all, Reducing and Reusing are arguably more important. I have to admit, it’s mostly the corporations’ fault for telling us we need all these chemically toxic (everything made of plastic is toxic, the plastics industry is terrible) products, and now we come to rely on them for everything.

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  30. Ciel

    The eco fee has not been scrapped-instead of customers paying it at the till, the Ontario gov’t is making the taxpayers pay it for three months whilst the gov’t figures out a better plan for collection said fee.

    Yay to Canadian Tire for pointing out the obvious-the program don’t roll with Main Street with potholes left, right and centre.

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  31. Natalka

    Yes, as Ciel says – it will just come out of your taxpayer’s funds now, and they will reinstitute the fee at the consumer level at some point.

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