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Coalition asks Premier to Oppose Federal Tax Changes

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Halifax – A large employer coalition is speaking with a unified voice to encourage Premier Stephen McNeil to oppose the tax changes being proposed by the federal Minister of Finance.

More than 40 organizations representing tens of thousands of independent businesses, professionals and taxpayers across a wide range of sectors and regions of the province are signatories on a letter demanding the premier ask the federal government to back away from the proposed legislation being widely panned as a threat to small business.

The proposed tax changes to the federal tax structure has come under withering criticism from small business owners across the country. The plan is to eliminate or restrict how some business owners save on taxes, including:

·         Sharing income with family members;

·         Saving passive investment income in a corporation; and

·         Converting a corporation’s income into capital gains.

These measures are currently legal and are often used by independent businesses to reinvest, ensure the stability or save for the retirement.

“The idea is to make sure the wealthiest pay their fair share of taxes. Fair ball, but let's not throw smaller businesses under the bus in the process,” said Jordi Morgan, Vice President, Atlantic of the Canadian Federation of Independent Business. “Unfortunately, the government appears to forget that the vast majority of independent business owners aren’t the 1%; they’re the middle class.”

The federal government is currently taking feedback only until October 2nd on the proposed changes at [email protected]. The Nova Scotia Coalition for Small Business Tax Fairness encourages all Nova Scotians concerned about these changes to voice their concern. We are asking the Premier of Nova Scotia to add his voice and stand up for small business in Nova Scotia.

For more information or to book a media interview with Jordi Morgan of CFIB, please contact Ryan Richard at [email protected] or 902-420-1997.

Other comments from business leaders and taxpayers:

“The proposed changes will have a negative impact on 75-80% of our members. We are already seeing industry consolidation as a result of unprecedented competition, disruptive technology and an aging workforce. These changes will make investment in these priority areas that much more difficult or impossible.” - Duncan P. Williams, ICD.D, President, Construction Association of Nova Scotia

 

“If the Federal Government truly believes they value the contribution that small businesses and entrepreneurs make to the Canadian economy, they should be prepared to take the time to hear those concerns and allow for a more meaningful discussion of those concerns.  What’s the rush?” - Patrick Sullivan, CEO, Halifax Chamber of Commerce.

 

 “IPOANS is made up of a significant number of small and medium sized businesses, many of whom are family operated, and all of whom will be adversely affected by the proposed tax changes.   All levels of government need to be working on programming and incentives for these small and mid-size entrepreneurs to grow their businesses, not tax regimes that will ultimately work against them.” -Jeremy Jackson, President, Investment Property Owners Association of Nova Scotia

"If Premier McNeil wants to encourage growth in this province then he will get off his hands, stand up to Liberal politicians in Ottawa and tell them to stop these punitive tax changes." - Kevin Lacey, Atlantic Director, Canadian Taxpayers Federation

“Small Business is the backbone of our province.  Any negative effects felt by Small Businesses will be felt by the average Nova Scotian, either through products or services.  Now is the time for meaningful consultation.” Heather Cruickshanks, President, Merit Nova Scotia

“Business Improvement Districts within the city of Halifax have been lobbying for a more fair and equitable tax system for small businesses when it comes to property taxes in the Halifax Regional Municipality. It has been a long and arduous struggle that still requires a lot more work before our businesses will see any kind of property tax relief. Many of our businesses are struggling just to survive and simply can't carry the burden of more taxes and/or receiving less tax incentives.” -  Karla Nicholson, Executive Director Quinpool Road Mainstreet District Association.

The Nova Scotia Coalition for Small Business Tax Fairness is made up of the following organizations:

·         Association of Psychologists of Nova Scotia

·         Atlantic Concrete Association

·         Atlantic Chamber of Commerce

·         Atlantic Institute for Market Studies

·         Atlantic Provinces Trucking Association

·         Canadian Federation of Independent Business

·         Canadian Taxpayers Federation

·         Chicken Farmers of Nova Scotia

·         Construction Association of Nova Scotia

·         Consulting Engineers of Nova Scotia

·         Dairy Farmers of Nova Scotia

·         Doctors Nova Scotia

·         Downtown Halifax Business Commission

·         Egg Farmers of Nova Scotia

·         Family Business Association – Atlantic

·         Halifax Chamber of Commerce

·         Insurance Brokers Association of Nova Scotia

·         Investment Property Owners Association Nova Scotia

·         King County Federation of Agriculture

·         Lebanese Chamber of Commerce

·         Merit Contractors Association of Nova Scotia

·         Music Nova Scotia

·         North End Business Association

·         Nova Scotia Automobile Dealers Association

·         Nova Scotia Co-operative Council

·         Nova Scotia Construction Labour Relations Association

·         Nova Scotia Dental Association

·         Nova Scotia Federation of Agriculture

·         Nova Scotia Home Builders Association

·         Nova Scotia Physiotherapy Association

·         Nova Scotia Realtors Association

·         Nova Scotia Road Builders Association

·         Nova Scotia Seafood Alliance

·         Pharmacy Association of Nova Scotia

·         Quinpool Road Mainstreet District Association

·         Restaurant Association of Nova Scotia

·         Restaurants Canada

·         Retail Council of Canada

·         Sackville Business Association

·         Spring Garden Road Area Business Association

·         Turkey Farmers of Nova Scotia

·         Urban Development Institute

·         Village on the Main