FINA Committee Report
If you have any questions or comments regarding the accessibility of this publication, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
As a result of their deliberations committees may make recommendations which they include in their reports for the consideration of the House of Commons or the Government. Recommendations related to this study are listed below.
The House of Commons Standing Committee on Finance recommends that the Government of Canada, in accordance with the powers of each jurisdiction:
Health Care and Research
Develop and implement a long-term mental health COVID-19 recovery plan to ensure all Canadians – especially the most vulnerable – can access the care they need, no matter where they live.
Address gaps in the ability to monitor and manage public health risks at Canada’s ports of entry, as well as in the procurement of medical equipment (such as testing and contact tracing equipment), supplies, vaccinations and personal protective equipment through domestic production – where possible – or through more diversified international sourcing and stockpiling where needed.
Rejuvenate the National Emergency Strategic Stockpile and collaborate with provincial, territorial and regional authorities on asset management.
Set national standards for long-term care facilities and make investments in both long-term care and in-home, including home, community, and institutional settings, that will allow provinces to achieve a standard of care that will provide dignity for seniors requiring such care in Canada, with proper accountability measures.
Make targeted investments in health care that will improve access to primary care, mental health supports, and virtual care in provincial health care systems.
Implement strategies that increase the resiliency and address inequalities of the health-care system to safeguard Canada’s social and economic security.
Work in collaboration with the provinces and territories to assist those jurisdictions in accelerating the deployment of technology and ensure the availability of health human resources with appropriate training in culturally competent virtual care.
Provide $2.5 million per year for three years ($7.5 million total) to sustain, scale, and spread national reporting on cardiovascular care quality, as well as inform care delivery and management during and following the COVID-19 pandemic.
Work with provinces to adequately fund palliative care.
Make home care and palliative care more available across the country.
Move forward on its commitment to implement an equitable, national and universal pharmacare program, beginning with the development of a preliminary common formulary of essential medicines by January 2022 that would be comprehensively expanded by 2027.
Ensure that the Patented Medicine Prices Review Board changes do not create barriers for new medicines for Canadians.
Support the establishment of the Vaccine and Infectious Disease Organization (VIDO) as a National Centre for Pandemic Research, and support VIDO’s role as a National Centre for Pandemic Research – expanding Canada’s capacity for research on emerging pathogens – by providing infrastructure support for animal housing and containment level 3 and 4 research at this centre.
Provide a one-time 25% increase in investment in the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council for research restart and recovery from the setback of the COVID-19 pandemic to research laboratories in Canada.
Honour next year’s centenary of the discovery of insulin through a renewed investment of $15 million in the JDRF-CIHR Partnership to Diabetes to be matched by JDRF and its partners, as well as investing $150 million in funding over seven years to support the implementation of a new nationwide diabetes strategy – based on the Diabetes 360˚ framework – which should facilitate the creation of Indigenous-specific strategic approaches led and owned by Indigenous groups.
Commit to paying 5% of the global funding needed for vaccine research, production and deployment. Earmark $2 billion in the 2021 federal budget for that purpose.
Children, Families and Social Policy
Establish national standards for child care, create a nationalized child-care system or increase funding for child care.
In partnership with provincial, territorial and Indigenous governments, implement a National Early Learning and Child Care System, including at least 2 billion in the 2021 federal budget, to address the early childhood educator labour shortage, and provide funding to increase access to childcare spaces as well as supports to ensure new childcare services are affordable for families.
Provide financial supports to prevent COVID-19 outbreaks in sexual assault centres, the current support for which is inadequate and excludes essential agencies, as COVID-19 has made the life of women who are sexually abused or trafficked much more dangerous.
Provide financial support for victims of domestic abuse and social housing, as many women who are victims of domestic abuse are unemployed, with little prospects of employment, and may not have access to child benefits. Social housing during the pandemic is very rare.
Adopt a series of targeted personal income supports for groups in need, including Canadians living with disabilities, youth aging out of care, women fleeing violence, those who have lost income, who cannot work because they are sick and are ineligible for employment insurance (EI) sickness benefits, or are able and willing to work but are unable to secure employment.
Reform the registered disability savings plan system to make it easier to access.
Uncouple the eligibility for the disability tax credit (DTC) and a registered disability savings plan (RDSP) so that individuals who are denied the DTC do not have their RDSP government co-contributions clawed back.
Make the disability tax credit refundable.
Invest $45 million over three years to strengthen Canada’s Anti-Racism Strategy and provide more capacity for community-led projects to combat racism.
Extend Old Age Security payments to the surviving spouse of a deceased individual to three months.
Protect the pension funds of workers as privileged creditors by amending the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act and the Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act.
Support Indigenous peoples, communities and businesses dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic by:
- increasing financial assistance and support for Indigenous peoples living in urban and off-reserve environments;
- developing public policies which take into consideration the needs of Indigenous peoples living in urban and off-reserve environments;
- addressing the disparities faced by Indigenous peoples in the areas of housing, access to clean drinking water, access to personal protective equipment, food insecurity, health, and medevac transportation;
- supporting Indigenous businesses by ensuring continued access to government financing programs such as the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy;
- implementing health protocols for Indigenous communities who are unable to conduct screening tests for COVID-19; and
- providing financial support to Indigenous communities who rely on tourism and have suffered from the effects of the pandemic.
Address the ongoing priorities of Indigenous communities by:
- increasing financial support for programs earmarked for Indigenous government activities (e.g. the Band Support Funding Program);
- including all Indigenous groups in decision-making processes concerning the future allocation and distribution of government resources, as well as in the development of public policy;
- immediately allocating substantial government funding to Indigenous communities to combat child poverty and improve health-care services;
- addressing the public security needs of Indigenous communities who do not have access to policing services; and
- ensuring there is sufficient affordable housing units for Indigenous peoples, such as providing an additional 10,000 units for Indigenous communities in Quebec.
Immediately ensure a supply of “tap” drinking water for all Indigenous nations in Canada.
Expand Indigenous fiscal powers to include sales, resources, tobacco, cannabis, excise and income, or taksis.
Commit to Indigenous-led conservation by expanding support for existing and new Indigenous Guardians initiatives and Indigenous Protected and Conserved Areas.
Implement the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Call to Action No. 21 by providing “sustainable funding for existing and new Aboriginal healing centres to address the physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual harms caused by residential schools, and to ensure that the funding of healing centres in Nunavut and the Northwest Territories is a priority.”.
Invest $50 million to implement the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Call to Action No. 23 by increasing recruitment and retention of Indigenous health professionals and providing cultural competency training for health-care professionals.
Provide funding for Indigenous-led mental health care to continue closing gaps in health outcomes between Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities.
Provide substantial, long-term funding towards the operations and infrastructure of Friendship Centres.
Implement a “For Indigenous, By Indigenous” housing strategy that properly addresses the unique needs of urban, rural, and northern Indigenous communities.
Follow the example of Northwest Territories Housing, Nunavut Housing, B.C. Housing and the Vancouver Affordable Housing Agency and use innovative, sustainable and climate adaptive Canadian foundation solutions for buildings on unstable soils – permafrost, floodplains and brownfields – in support of affordable and aboriginal housing needs.
Address the backlog of land claim and self-government negotiations with Indigenous organizations by increasing the staffing levels of federal negotiators.
Employment and Labour
Adjust its economic immigration program to meet Canada’s current and future labour and skill market needs that cannot be met by Canadians; and that future immigration selection take into consideration all occupations and all skill levels listed in the ten sectors identified in the National Strategy for Critical Infrastructure.
Fund Statistics Canada to collect data on regional and local skills and labour.
Extend income support programs such as EI and the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy, and consider the implementation of a universal basic income program.
Establish a legal definition of self-employment status to end discrimination between these workers, employees and different types of businesses.
Reorient employment supports and develop a training system that supports green jobs.
Adopt Bill C-395, the Opportunity for People with Disabilities Act, which was introduced in the 42nd Parliament, to ensure people are always better off from working.
Reform tax and benefit programs to allow low-income workers to keep more of their wages to be the primary beneficiaries.
Education and Skills Training
Establish a fund directed towards expanding post-secondary education infrastructure.
Invest in skills training for young Canadians that will enable more of them to gain the skills they need to secure good paying jobs in the post-COVID economy.
Work with the provinces on a national strategy to upskill and educate Canadian workers to fill in-demand jobs across the Canadian economy. The strategy should support and extend post-secondary opportunities to traditionally marginalized communities, those most harmed by the pandemic, and to Indigenous peoples.
Arts, Culture, Tourism and Hospitality
Provide targeted funding to support art museums and public art galleries throughout the reopening and recovery phase following the COVID-19 pandemic.
Expand funding programs that support the creation of digital content by art museums and public art galleries, to allow for increased public participation online.
Amend the Endowment Incentives component of Canadian Heritage’s Canada Cultural Investment Fund (CCIF) to make art museums and public art galleries eligible and increase the total annual budget of the CCIF to $25.5 million to reflect that change.
Complete the review of the Copyright Act during the year by making the necessary amendments to the Act to ensure that rights holders receive fair compensation for the use of their works.
Establish a tax credit for the restoration and preservation of buildings listed in the Canadian Register of Historic Places.
Support the cultural, tourism and hospitality sectors by:
- providing additional financial support to these sectors until COVID‑19-related restrictions can be safely lifted;
- introducing a new program modelled after the Marquee Tourism Events Program with funding of $225 million over three years;
- expanding the eligibility criteria of the Communities at Risk: Security Infrastructure Program to allow festivals and events to apply; and
- supporting the planning of safe live and digital activities and events.
Charities and Non-Profit Organizations
Eliminate the capital gains tax on donations of shares in private corporations or real property to charities.
Establish a fund to provide bridge operating grants for up to 12 months to essential community service organizations. Funding should be flexible to allow organizations to maintain operations and respond to emerging needs. This support should be made available for a three to six-month period as organizations recover from the impacts of COVID-19. Applications should outline need or financial duress, and what other programs have been accessed (or are unavailable), such as wage and rent relief. Support could be differentiated by subsector or relevant need – as immediate humanitarian support may be gauged differently than longer-term institutional goals that can be addressed at a later time.
Review existing tax measures available to both individual and corporate donors and make appropriate amendments to encourage giving to, and supporting the recovery of, the health charities sector.
Improve the National Housing Co-investment Fund by providing greater resources, making the fund more transparent, and making the application process simpler and timelier.
Continue and enhance funding for the Rapid Housing Initiative by allocating $7 billion for no less than 50,000 supportive housing units. The funding should be allocated directly to municipalities.
Deliver necessary funding to develop shovel-ready affordable housing projects which will also stimulate the economy and create jobs.
Simplify access and implementation of Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation funds for housing.
Support Canadian municipalities by:
- providing enhanced funding to maintain municipal assets in a state of good repair and committing to invest in infrastructure at the level that was planned prior to the COVID-19 crisis as well as consider maximizing any investments given the current pandemic;
- reinstating the National Guide to Sustainable Municipal Infrastructure; and
- developing more opportunities to partner with municipalities directly through programs, including scaling up proven federal programs that support municipalities.
Accelerate the repair of ports, wharves and other federal infrastructure.
Invest directly in long-term care infrastructure by allowing the provinces to use their shares of federal infrastructure money for long-term care.
As part of the economic recovery, accelerate investments in infrastructure for fighting climate change, particularly investments in public transportation.
Expand the Public Transit Infrastructure Fund.
Launch VIA Rail’s High Frequency Rail project, as it represents a key infrastructure initiative that will contribute to a more sustainable economic recovery for Canada.
Invest in infrastructure, particularly into those that promote walking and cycling.
Provide financial support for regional and municipal airport development plans.
Support Canadian airports by providing:
- immediate financial support through a moratorium on ground lease rents and interest‐free loans (or equivalent operational support) in order to cover operating costs and alleviate the need for rate increases during the recovery; and
- short-term operating grants for airports to strengthen and maintain financial liquidity.
Rural, Remote and Northern Regions
In consultation with Northerners, design programs to address the Northern infrastructure gap in areas like housing, telecommunications, transportation, energy, and climate change preparedness.
Appropriately fund the implementation of Canada's Arctic and Northern Policy Framework.
Ensure every person in Canada has access to reliable, high-speed internet by 2025, including those living in rural, remote, northern, and Indigenous communities.
Innovation, Research and Development
Reform the Scientific Research and Experimental Development (SR&ED) Program to help foster R&D in Canada by:
- increasing the base rate from 20% to 25% while introducing new complementarity measures similar to the tax incentive system for patents;
- eliminating or substantially raising the upper limit for taxable capital phase-out range from the current $50 million;
- reinstating capital expenditure eligibility that was phased out beginning 1 January 2013;
- eliminating the 20% disallowance on arm’s-length consulting payments;
- updating definitions for eligible costs and R&D; and
- reducing the amount of documentation to be completed for businesses filing SR&ED claims.
Extend and enhance R&D incentive programs such as the Accelerated Capital Cost Allowance program and the Innovation Assistance Program while providing direct funding for R&D to universities, hospitals, laboratories and other research facilities.
Recapitalize the Strategic Innovation Fund to support projects that will bring transformational employers to Canada and create jobs in Canadian communities.
Lead a national innovation agenda with significant new investments in research and knowledge mobilization, with an emphasis on helping domestic companies grow and compete globally.
Financially support the establishment of a quantum computing research institute in the Toronto area, similar to the Vector Institute, to build upon the world-class cluster of quantum research expertise in the city.
Establish a dedicated funding program to support early-mover proponents in the Small Modular Reactor (SMR) sector as part of its SMR Action Plan.
Start-Ups and Small and Medium-Sized Businesses
Implement personal and market-driven tax incentives to attract equity capital and private investment for new business formation as well as the expansion of existing small and medium-sized businesses (SME).
Invest $35 million into Green Centre Canada’s ADVANCE Network Project to accelerate start-ups and the development of chemical and materials cleantech companies.
Create a National Intellectual Property Strategy and help Canadian start-ups navigate complex intellectual property management, assisting with patent filings, invention disclosures, fundraising, partnering and investment.
Allow small businesses access to the 30-day protection from creditors afforded to companies with debts over $5 million under the Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act to help small businesses restructure in case of insolvency and survive the COVID-19 pandemic, preserve jobs and limit the number of bankruptcies.
Financially support the shift to digital among SMEs.
Provide funding, through the recovery program for Canadian SMEs, for the trademark protection strategy to cover the costs associated with trademark searches and trademark applications.
Ensure that government programs are better suited to cooperatives and self-employed workers, especially those registered in Canada’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan.
COVID-19 Response Programs
Prevent companies from increasing dividend payments or conducting share buybacks to enrich shareholders or paying executive bonuses while they are receiving 75% of their payroll from the federal government.
Ensure that wage subsidies should only be used to pay employees and not be used for executive bonuses or dividends.
Require the companies receiving the Large Employer Emergency Financing Facility to prove that their business plans are in line with the Paris Agreement target to limit temperature increase to 1.5 degrees.
Implement transparency and accountability mechanisms to ensure that the total amounts available to the oil and gas sector and the transactions made by Export Development Canada and the Business Development Bank of Canada, and through the Large Employer Emergency Financing Facility are made public, including the new loan required for the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion.
Ensure independent advisors (contractors) qualify for wage support.
Agriculture and Fisheries
Work with industry to develop a labour action plan for Canada’s agri-food sector.
Improve the Business Risk Management Program and AgriStability be reinstated at 85% of reference margins.
Invest $450 million over 5 years according to the Deans Council - Agriculture, Food and Veterinary Medicine proposal for the following:
- addressing current and emerging public health risks from zoonotic disease and pandemic threats by supporting the establishment of the Canadian One Health Network; and
- establishing a coordinated Federal, Provincial,
and Territorial investment strategy for Sustainable Agriculture and Food
- to support research and development, innovation, and skills training;
- for co-location sharing of renewed basic or foundational infrastructure between universities, governments, and industry.
Create and fund a new AgriResilience program to help farmers transition to lower-carbon agriculture practices, thereby reducing the growing climate risk in this sector. An AgriResilience program would reward innovation and the adoption of new, more resilient farming practices, thereby helping to reduce climate risk.
Create a limited statutory deemed trust, similar to the U.S. Perishable Agricultural Commodities Act, to support needed liquidity and protect produce sellers during bankruptcy in Canada.
Increase funding for marine biology research to properly assess the status of stocks of various fishery resources.
Comply with bi-lateral treaties with the United States regarding the Great Lakes and honour these commitments by funding the Great Lakes Fishery Commission at a rate of $19.44 million in fiscal year 2021-2022 and every year thereafter.
Invest in the processing of natural resources and environmental development, particularly in the following sectors:
- renewable energy;
- innovative technologies;
- wastewater management; and
- research and development.
Diversify markets and opportunities for Canadian forestry products on export markets by increasing the budget for Natural Resources Canada’s market development program.
Increase support in the transition of the forestry sector, particularly in research and development of forest biomass supply chains and bioenergy production, by supporting a Canadian strategic transition plan.
Introduce a registered savings plan for the forestry industry to allow private logging income, under certain conditions, to be tax-sheltered and that its use for forest management purposes remains non-taxable.
Introduce a logging income averaging regime for private loggers to divide occasional felling income over several years and prevent forest management costs over the years from being higher than the net income generated in the logging year.
Subsidize plant modernization and research to develop innovative secondary and tertiary processing products in the forestry sector.
Develop the Canadian Minerals and Metals Plan to improve Canadian resilience and develop an export strategy that helps Canada feed into the recovery packages of other nations, especially as they pursue mineral-intensive green infrastructure and energy projects.
Develop a national aerospace industry strategy involving:
- predictable support for research and development, including refundable tax credits;
- risk-sharing investments that will help protect the entire supply chain;
- support for companies in the implementation of practices and technologies that promote productivity (automation and digital technologies in the production process);
- the creation an investment fund dedicated to aerospace to strengthen companies by promoting "grouping strategies;"
- the redesign of the current Industrial and Technological Benefits Policy in order to foster national leadership and maximize local benefits;
- structuring benefits for the sector in government contracts;
- the development of a low-interest financial assistance program specific to the aerospace industry to help companies through this pandemic; and
- the renewal and expansion of the funding commitments for aerospace training programs at the provincial and federal levels.
Provide direct funding to Canada’s aerospace manufacturing sector, especially SMEs operating in this industry facing bankruptcy or those that are targets of foreign acquisition.
Require airlines to reimburse their customers whose flights are cancelled.
Develop industrial strategies to expand critical domestic manufacturing capacity and supply chain infrastructure for Canadian manufacturing, auto, aerospace, shipbuilding, pharmaceuticals and PPE production.
Develop comprehensive industrial strategies and make investments designed both to strengthen core infrastructure that supports business incubation activities and the expansion of critical domestic manufacturing capacity, as well as to ensure an adequate quality and quantity of supply chain infrastructure. In developing these strategies and making these investments, the Government’s focus should include: auto, rail, clean water, aerospace, shipbuilding, construction materials, pharmaceuticals and personal protective equipment, as well as such service and creative sectors as telecommunications and media. Finally, while taking these actions, the Government should accelerate the delivery of funding to core projects that it approved for support prior to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Establish an Economic Strategy Table on Creative Industries to ensure sector growth and global competitiveness.
Eliminate the excise tax on the first 10,000 hectolitres of brewed beer to fund craft brewers so they can hire more people, purchase more raw materials and speed up their economic recovery.
Replace the Excise Duty Exemption on wine made from 100% Canadian-grown grapes with a program that encourages the purchase of locally grown grapes.
Exempt credit card interchange fees from GST at the point of sale.
Grant the seller the same tax benefits when a farm or small business is sold from a parent to a child in the form of corporate shares as if it were sold to an unrelated person.
Amend the Income Tax Act to clearly define that income earned by private campgrounds who employ fewer than five full-time employees year-round be considered as “active business income” for the purpose of determining their eligibility for the small business deduction.
Review the rules defining passive and active business income, including the five‑employee rule for small businesses.
Implement an annual cost recovery fee on the tobacco industry to recover the cost of the federal government’s tobacco control strategy.
Implement a levy or annual licensing fee on tobacco manufacturers and introduce a 20% value-added tax to be levied on vaping products.
Create a legally enforceable duty of care from Canada Revenue Agency to taxpayers.
Increase funding for the Office of the Auditor General of Canada.
Withdraw from the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank.
Publish, in the 2021 federal budget, a roadmap to eliminate ineffective fossil fuel subsidies by 2025 to respect Canada’s G20 commitment in this area.
Ensure that Canada’s R&D efforts are sufficient to support a resilient, competitive and knowledge-based economy and society by bringing research and development investments to 2% of GDP by 2026.
Eliminate targeted corporate welfare programs. Examples include: $50 million to Mastercard, $40 million to Blackberry, and $12 million to Loblaws, etc.
Implement a digital identity system that empowers Canadians to control their data that is held by the federal government.
Create a national data strategy.
Consult with stakeholders and consider compliance costs before changing product labelling requirements.
Announce mitigation measures for the market access concessions granted in the Canada–United States–Mexico Agreement.
Provide the Canada Border Services Agency and the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) with the resources and training needed to thoroughly and effectively enforce regulations and standards for the import of dairy products at the Canadian border and ensure that CFIA has the resources to conduct inspections of dairy processing facilities seeking to export into Canada.
Work with the provinces and territories to remove interprovincial trade barriers to achieve a stronger internal economic union in Canada.
Prioritize exports of clean-burning Canadian natural gas and natural gas technology to coal-intensive countries to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions.
Remain committed to achieving the goal of 90% non-emitting electricity by 2030, as well as commit to achieving 100% non-emitting electricity before 2050 by setting legally binding five-year emissions-reduction milestones in order to achieve economy-wide net‑zero emissions by 2050.
Continue to make the investments necessary to support other levels of government and industry to grow demand for clean electricity by: expanding electrification of public transit and light-duty vehicles; planning for transmission grid expansion to displace coal and diesel; and demonstrating innovative green hydrogen production and utilization projects.
Encourage broad adoption of smaller GHG reduction projects through a sliding scale national incentive program for projects $10 thousand to $100 thousand.
Make investments in projects that will improve the renewable capacity of Canada’s energy grids, such as the Atlantic Loop, and eliminate Canada’s reliance on coal by 2030.
Implement the Clean Fuel Standard.
Enshrine the Paris Agreement targets, as written in the text of the agreement, into legislation.
Provide targeted incentives for the research and development of heavy and commercial electric vehicles, including the development of electric ambulances.
Provide incentives toward the purchase of new and used zero-emission vehicles (ZEV) for individuals and corporations, such as through a four-year federal guarantee for ZEV purchase related loans.
Significantly increase the electrification of federal government and Crown vehicle fleets.
Support ZEV growth in Canada – to reach 100% ZEV sales by 2040 – through a national ZEV standard and a National Auto Strategy that include:
- building charging infrastructure and setting higher 1 and 5-year targets for electric vehicles charging station deployment;
- establishing targeted industry support programs;
- expanding funding for ZEV training programs;
- committing to Canada’s ZEV targets with regulatory measures; and
- developing a national strategy on low-carbon commercial transport in urban areas.
Aim to incentivize the purchasing of ZEVs by increasing the base Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) cut-off for the iZEV program for eligible light-duty vehicles pickup trucks and SUVs/minivans from the current $45,000 (with a $54,999 ceiling for higher priced trims) to $60,000 with a $69,999 ceiling to support the arrival of electric pickup trucks and SUVs, which will have a higher MSRP than smaller light-duty vehicles (sedan threshold to remain at current levels). This will help increase regional equity and access for persons who require these larger vehicles for their work and/or local context.