September 18 Blog

The Low Down on Construction – September 18

Fasten your seat belts…..I’ve got a LOT to say on this topic!

As you know the federal government is considering major changes to how private corporations are taxed in Canada. Ottawa believes that all income is equal from a taxation perspective and have failed to accurately recognize the unique and important role played by private investment in business – small businesses in particular.

Their proposed changes negatively impact our MERIT members by raising taxes, reducing the incentive for private investment, increasing the administrative burden and creating challenges in the transfer of business shares to family members.

These changes are being made to eliminate perceived loopholes. We believe that we presently have fair and balanced tax regulations that promote growth. Our research tells us that these proposed tax changes will create significant challenges for our members.

One of the major issues is that the Federal Government is only offering a 75-day window to consult.  Decisions of this magnitude need at least a year-long consultation period or more. After all, we want to make sure we get it right!

Not only is the 75-day consultation period too short, but the fact that Minister Morneau’s announcement was made during the middle of the summer and accompanied draft legislation strongly suggests that he never intended to have a robust conversation about the proposed changes.  This is just simply disingenuous and wrong.

On a national level, we have made our voice heard and have supported the following recommendations:

  • That the Federal Government extend the stakeholder consultation period to March 31, 2018.
  • Require that the Federal Government provide a more accurate and truthful comparison that will hopefully inform a full-scale impact analysis of the proposed changes.
  • Require that the Federal Government complete an external review on the administrative impacts of any changes before implementation.
  • Require that the Federal Government complete a detailed financial and economic analysis on the impacts of the proposed changes as they relate to family-owned businesses.

You can be assured that Merit will continue to work with other business organizations to express our concerns with the proposed rule changes. In addition, we will be travelling to Ottawa on October 17 to participate in a national Lobby Day.  Proposed tax changes will certainly be on the agenda for our meetings.

When fairly applied, taxes are an important part of doing business. As business owners and key members of the Saskatchewan business community, we acknowledge that we all have an obligation to pay our fair share of taxes.

What can you do?  There are a few simple things that will help get the message across to the Liberals about the detrimental effects of their proposed changes:

Your engagement will ensure that these decision-makers more fully understand the negative outcomes that the proposed tax changes will create for business owners in Saskatchewan.