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No more taxation without representation!

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Small businesses are taxed at higher rates than individual citizens – despite having no representation in municipal politics. Add your voice to those who are saying no more taxation without representation!

Imagine paying taxes that are up to three times more than the average citizen, while also being told that you are not allowed to vote in local elections. 

The truth is: you don’t have to stretch your imagination that far. Many business owners live in a different municipality than the one they do business in, despite the fact they pay property taxes in both. Adding insult to injury, property taxes paid by small businesses are often much larger than those paid by residents although small businesses often use fewer local services than community residents. 

But what if you rent instead of own your property? 

Think again. If you are renting a commercial property, a higher tax burden will often be placed on you through your rent, triple net lease, and strata taxes. 

However, you, as a small business owner, are as much a part of your community as everyone else. You are essential for job creation and to provide training for workers. As well, when a kids’ sports team is looking for sponsorship, they come to you. As a business you have all the same responsibilities as an individual citizen. Shouldn’t you have the same rights? 

That’s why in advance of the October 20, 2018 municipal elections, we are calling on Mayor and Council across B.C. to take action. And you can help us. Sign our action alert and add your name to the list of business owners who are fed up with being excluded!

In a recent survey conducted by CFIB, 78% of members believe they should be able to vote in local elections for the municipality their business is located in. By giving business the right to vote, city councils and mayors will be as responsible to small businesses as they are to individual citizens. Since the municipal business vote was eliminated in BC in 1993, local governments have not been held accountable to local business. Therefore, they have had a licence to pursue policies that have negative consequences for your businesses. 

In 1993, the provincial government argued that giving local businesses a non-resident vote in civic elections lead to votes for parking spaces or storage lockers. But you are so much more than a parking space or a storage locker and your voice deserves to be heard! This is why we are asking municipal election candidates to lobby the provincial government to reintroduce the municipal business vote.