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Fighting for your priorities with Premier Pallister

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CFIB meeting with Manitoba Premier Brian Pallister and Minister Blaine Pedersen

CFIB’s Dan Kelly (President & CEO), Marilyn Braun-Pollon (VP, Prairie & Agri-business) and Jonathan Alward (Director, Provincial Affairs) meet with Premier Brian Pallister and Minister Blaine Pedersen.

We know you’re too busy to attend meetings with politicians, so instead we ask your opinion on issues that matter to your business and then present your key concerns to decision makers, like the Premier or Finance Minister.

CFIB recently met with Premier Brian Pallister and the Growth Enterprise & Trade Minister Blaine Pedersen to discuss your priorities that will help improve Manitoba’s small business climate.

The meeting focused on the need for Manitoba to not follow the federal tax changes to passive investments, and to rebate the $254 million WCB surplus back to employers.

Opposing federal small business tax changes:

CFIB is calling on all provinces to oppose the federal tax changes to passive investments that would see some small businesses shut out from accessing the small business tax rate, if a business has more than a certain amount of pre-existing passive investment income, they would instead be taxed like big businesses. 

We have learned that provinces have the choice to implement similar rules, and we are pushing the Manitoba government to not follow the federal government’s lead. If Manitoba chooses to implement similar rules, small businesses will pay thousands of dollars more in provincial taxes next year on top of higher federal taxes. We know many small business owners rely on their investment income to stay afloat during economic uncertainty without resorting to cost cutting measures like layoffs, downsizing or closures.

Refunding employers' WCB premiums: 

The Workers Compensation Board (WCB) of Manitoba released its financial results for 2017, which shows that the Board was at a 148.8% funding level or $254 million overfunded, well beyond its targeted funding ratio of 130%. 

Manitoba businesses, like you, recognize the importance of every WCB being fiscally sustainable in the long-term. However, this does not mean the Board should be overly cautious or hold onto employers’ money, when it should be rebated. 

Thanks to you, CFIB delivered over 2,500 signed petitions calling on WCB to refund its $254 million surplus back to Manitoba employers. 

Other priorities discussed:

We also discussed other important issues including reducing the Provincial Sales Tax, changing Manitoba’s education funding model (lowering school property taxes on businesses during the upcoming review), and reducing inter-provincial trade barriers.

Next steps:

Help us push for a WCB refund by signing our Action Alert: Urging Manitoba WCB to refund employers! Once signed, please return it by fax to (204) 982-0811 or scan and email it to [email protected].

Have questions about any of the topics above? Contact Business Resources at 1-888-234-2232 or email [email protected].