Budget delivers tax relief but debt balloons above previous forecasts
Halifax, February 25, 2020 – Today, Finance Minister Karen Casey tabled the 2020-21 Nova Scotia provincial budget with a small surplus, some tax relief for business and soaring debt.
The provincial debt is continuing to climb as is the debt to GDP ratio. Nova Scotia’s net debt is now forecast to climb to almost $18 billion by 2023-24, and the debt to GDP ratio (the measure by which government measure’s the sustainability of debt), which was forecast to drop, is now forecast to climb over the next three years.
“The provincial debt remains a primary concern for small business owners. When asked about debt reduction almost 40 per cent of Canadian Federation of Independent Business members responded it should be a high priority,” said Jordi Morgan, CFIB’s vice president, Atlantic. “Today’s debt is tomorrow’s taxes and government continues to add to the problem by increasing operational spending in almost every department in government.”
There was some good news as the government announced two tax reductions for businesses in the province. The small business tax rate will be reduced by .5 per cent to 2.5 per cent and the general corporate tax rate is being reduced by 2 per cent to 14 per cent, in line with the premier’s announcement earlier this month. “This will result in a saving of 10.5 million dollars for small business and 70.5 million dollars for larger firms,” added Morgan. “We’ve been asking for some tax relief for years, so we are pleased to see the government acknowledging that Nova Scotia businesses needed tax relief to be competitive.”
In a recent survey, when asked what should be the small business priorities of the provincial government, 77 per cent of our members indicated reducing taxes.
For reducing corporate taxes but continuing spending growth CFIB is giving the 2020/2021 provincial budget a “B+”.
To arrange an interview please contact Ryan Richard at 902-420-1997 or [email protected]
CFIB is Canada’s largest association of small and medium-sized businesses with 110,000 national members, including 5,200 members in Nova Scotia, across every sector and region.