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2017 Government Resolution Wish List (as penned by small business owners)

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Small business owners are hoping governments in BC are making some small business friendly New Year’s resolutions for 2017!  It’s important for governments to set benchmarks and goals for making the small business climate in BC a strong one. Here are some resolutions we’d like to see:

Go on a budget diet:

  • The BC government should continue to control spending and wage costs in 2017
  • On average, BC municipalities have been spending far faster than the rate of inflation plus population growth. In 2017, commit to address overspending.

Exercise Fair Taxation Policies:

The BC government resolutions in 2017:

  • Introduce a refund on PST paid on some business inputs so business owners can better invest in their company.
  • Keep the promise to lower the small business corporate tax rate from 2.5% to 1.5% in Budget 2017.
  • Reduce the school property tax gap, which currently sees businesses pay on average 2.5x more than residents on the same property value.

BC Municipal resolutions in 2017

  • Reduce the municipal property tax gap. Businesses pay 2.6x more than residents on the same property value on average in BC, and the ratio is much worse in some municipalities (e.g. Vancouver ratio is 4.2).
  • Do away with the annual business license like what has been done in the communities of Langford and Colwood.

Clean out your red tape closet:

The BC government resolutions in 2017:

  • Legislate the one-for-one rule on regulations (e.g. for each new regulation added, eliminate another of equal weight). Continue to find ways to reduce the red tape, particularly in the PST system and in crown corporations.

BC Municipal resolutions in 2017

  • Municipalities should clean up duplicate or antiquated regulation. However, first they must open their closet doors and count the number of regulatory requirements imposed on business and citizens so they have a benchmark on where they stand.

Small business owners will be there to cheer on all governments that commit to these resolutions.