On February 19, 2019, B.C. will table its annual budget, where we get a heads-up on the provincial government’s agenda for the year.
You may already be aware of some policies we are pushing hard on, such as the Employer Health Tax (which came into effect January 1, 2019) and the Speculation Tax (also coming into effect January 1, 2019. In December, we met with the Minister of Finance’s Chief of Staff to discuss these issues. We will continue to bring light to the harsh realities these policies will have on BC’s small business sector and the economy.
- Here’s a list of some of our top asks for the 2019 provincial budget.
- Eliminate the Employer Health tax or, at a minimum, wait until MSP premiums are fully eliminated before implementing AND increase the small business exemption threshold to $1.25 million
- Scrap, or at least reconsider, the Speculation Tax as proposed
- Continue to balance budgets and begin to reduce debt
- Direct WorkSafeBC’s board to rebate at least some of the excess surplus; the system is currently $6.4 billion dollars overfunded, and a rebate to employers would go a long way to supporting small business
To read the entire submission, or to see all our recommendations, click here.
Another issue that is top of mind for us this year is property taxes.
CFIB has recently joined a property tax coalition with other leading organizations in Vancouver to help push for change. In 2018, business owners paid for 29% of all property taxes, but only accounted for roughly 12% of all properties! In other words, business owners are responsible for an unfair amount of property taxes.
We want to thank you for taking our survey this January on property taxes. Your answers will help us lobby on this issue, and help bring property tax fairness to your municipality.
Keep your eyes open for further updates, following the BC Budget on February 19.