Toppling a red tape CASL: CRTC shares paperweight crown

Worst examples
of Red Tape
Grading the ProvincesCost of Red Tape to BusinessesGrading the Tax Man (CRA)Best example of cutting Red Tape


The 2015 Paperweight Award was shared by three worthy winners – one at each level of government – that are making things difficult for small business in their own unique, stifling, and expensive way. Without further ado, here are the 2015 Paperweight champions!

  • Federal Folly: Jean-Pierre Blais, Chairman of the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC), is the 2015 federal winner for his role in launching Canada’s new anti-spam law (CASL). Complying with this new regime has proven complicated and costly for small business owners, who say it does little to stop real spam while placing onerous requirements on businesses to record and track consent for routine business email.
  • Provincially Perplexing: Ontario Labour Minister Kevin Flynn gets the nod for an absurd regulation that he didn’t dream up, but that he certainly has the power to tear down. The regulation requires businesses to print the province’s employment standards poster on legal-sized (as opposed to standard letter-sized) paper. Even better? The poster was outdated due to changes in minimum wage, and it wasn’t updated for a month thereafter, meaning that all Ontario businesses were non-compliant and subject to a $360 fine.
  • Municipal Muddle: Luc Ferrandez, Mayor of Plateau-Mont-Royal, Quebec, was chosen from a compelling field of municipal nominees for his city’s patio pickiness. A local rule against plastic patio chairs forces restaurants with slim profit margins to spring for more stylish seats. The small business community stood up in protest. 

Check out the list of all the Paperweight finalists. For a complete breakdown of Red Tape Awareness Week™ events and efforts, visit

Got your own story of government bogging down your business with the burden of red tape? Tell your tale and add your voice to the list of 2016 Paperweight nominees.