Letter: Lumber and Mar-a-Lago

Published: 5/21/2017 12:01:20 AM
Lumber and Mar-a-Lago

The United States is now charging an import duty on Canadian (and American) lumber crossing the Canadian border into the United States.

Canada is paying the tariff but jacking the prices up to Americans who are buying the material. The amount of money it is costing a new home owner is $6,300 on average per house.

The taxes are going into the U.S. Treasury, but the homeowner is effectively paying this tax. It is sad that the lumber industry is the low-hanging fruit to pluck for testing the waters on reaction to Donald Trump’s decision to create “border” taxes.

A month or so has gone by and we really don’t hear anything about this in the media anymore. The possibility of machining and kiln-drying lumber increasing drastically in the U.S. is very small as our machinery for these processes are mostly old and worn out.

A modern facility is very capital intensive, and investors are not likely to spend a lot where politics can change in an instant.

Trump has spent over $25 million so far this year on his trips to Mar-a-Lago. This is almost precisely the taxes on 4,000 homes that are going up this year utilizing Canadian lumber. The money goes into the Treasury and out again for Trump’s weekends.

Steve Malinsky

Canterbury




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