Toronto, April 28, 2022
In our pre-budget submission, we asked government to take a “do no harm” approach to this year’s budget. On the eve of the first normal summer in two years, Ontario’s small business owners are among the most optimistic in the country, but many still have a long road ahead. It is encouraging that the Ontario government took our recommendation to heart in their budget and avoided introducing any new taxes or fees on small business owners.
Stay Open Plan
The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the need to improve Ontario’s healthcare system capacity to ensure hospital strain does not force additional lockdowns. We are pleased to see further announcements today to invest in strengthening not only physical capacity, but also hiring and training more staff to meet future healthcare needs.
CFIB continues to recommend that the government develop and share clear indicators on what could trigger the return of any COVID restrictions – including masking, social distancing, screening, and/or capacity limits – if we were to see a dramatic increase in hospital pressures in the fall.
Ontarians will benefit from highways, bridges, water and wastewater infrastructure, subways and other transit projects announced in today’s budget. However, we urge the government to include mitigation policies – particularly direct financial compensation – for projects that are highly disruptive to local businesses.
Small business owners have been through a brutal two years; reopening to roadwork, scaffolding or transit disruptions would be a significant blow to their recovery and could lead to permanent closures.
Over two-thirds of Ontario small businesses report that labour shortages are having an impact on their business. As we gear up for a restriction-free summer, skilled and unskilled labour shortages remain the top growth barrier, according to CFIB’s Business Barometer®. We applaud the government for continuing to build on their commitments to cut red tape, expand out-of-province credential recognition, and strongly invest in the next generation of workers.
We continue to recommend that government develop a support recognizing the informal, on-the-job training happening in businesses across the province.
We look forward to more details on the proposed Entrepreneurship Council and Entrepreneurship Strategy.
- Ryan Mallough, Senior Director of Provincial Affairs, Ontario
- Julie Kwiecinski, Director of Provincial Affairs, Ontario
For media enquiries or interviews, please contact:
Dariya Baiguzhiyeva, CFIB
The Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) is Canada’s largest association of small and medium-sized businesses with 95,000 members across every industry and region, including 38,000 in Ontario. CFIB is dedicated to increasing business owners’ chances of success by driving policy change at all levels of government, providing expert advice and tools, and negotiating exclusive savings. Learn more at cfib.ca.