The Peterborough Chamber of Commerce has made a submission to Finance Canada and Minister Bill Morneau on proposed federal tax changes.
"Much of the document simply provides the raw feedback from our small business members. The photos on the front cover depict the significant number of people who signed our #protectgrowth card in a couple of hours [at our LoveLocal Expo]. We're simply asking [the federal government] to slow down and get this right,"adds Stuart
Harrison, President & CEO, Peterborough Chamber of Commerce.
These proposed measures will change the rules that businesses have been following for almost half a century. The current rules have resulted in business growth and economic success for Canada while recognizing the risk entrepreneurs take in starting a business.
In Peterborough, City and County, the entrepreneurial culture is being nurtured and is growing. The Peterborough Chamber of Commerce membership is made up of close to 900 businesses, 93% of which are considered small business. To put these rules in place will crush opportunities and punish entrepreneurs.
In a recent article by the Canadian Chamber of Commerce, Senior Director of Economic, Financial & Tax Policy Hendrik Brakel writes, “Nobody supports tax evasion or loopholes. But these changes will punish legitimate businesses.
And, they come after the government cancelled reductions in the small business tax rate, tightened rules on partnerships and started taxing work in progress. That’s on top of new carbon taxes, raised CPP premiums and an
increase in the EI rate.”
The government has expressed an interest in seeing fairness in the tax system, but treating entrepreneurs and employees as the same does not accomplish this goal. Unlike employees, business owners do not receive pensions, health benefits, or vacation pay. Business owners invest their own money, pledge their own assets, and in many cases are making use of the current tax system to ensure they have money invested in the business in the event of an economic downturn and to plan for their retirement.
The current system in Canada is not unusual; the Canadian Chamber of Commerce points out that every advanced economy in the world has a system that allows business to accumulate and invest after-tax retained earnings.
The government also says it wants to crackdown on “high income individuals,” but these rule changes would target all incorporated businesses, many of which are restaurants, retail shops, farms and consultancies and are the backbone of our local economy.
Many small business owners have indicated that if these rules pass in their current form, they will shut down their business, seek full time employment positions, or move their business out of Canada.
The Peterborough Chamber and its membership encourage the federal government to take into consideration the concerns presented in the document.
Read the full document
The Canadian Chamber of Commerce has also created a campaign and petition called ProtectGrowth.
For more information about this campaign, and how you can speak up, visit protectgrowth.ca.