Hansard
Consult the user guide
For assistance, please contact us
Consult the user guide
For assistance, please contact us
Add search criteria
Results: 1 - 7 of 7
View Mel Arnold Profile
CPC (BC)
View Mel Arnold Profile
2019-06-14 12:25 [p.29133]
Mr. Speaker, today I am presenting two petitions from constituents in my riding of North Okanagan—Shuswap. Both petitions are calling on the government to withdraw Bill C-27, an act to amend the Pension Benefits Standards Act, 1985.
View Mel Arnold Profile
CPC (BC)
View Mel Arnold Profile
2016-11-17 15:54 [p.6874]
Mr. Speaker, I rise today to speak to Bill C-26, an act to amend the Canada Pension Plan, the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board Act and the Income Tax Act,
I must say that the bill proposes drastic intervention in the form of increased payroll taxes on every working Canadian in our nation. It is not just Canadian workers who would pay for the bill, but Canadian employers would likewise be required to increase their CPP contributions for each and every employee.
At a time when there are already clouds of uncertainty over our economy and employment insecurity for too many Canadian workers, the Liberal government proposes to take more cash from the pockets and books of Canadian workers and employers.
Why?
Canadian economists, Canadian business owners, and even the Department of Finance have told the Liberal government that this proposed tax hike would hurt Canadians. Analyses from Finance Canada show that this proposed tax hike would reduce employment, which is a nice way of saying it would kill jobs; reduce our national GDP; reduce business investment; reduce Canadians' disposable income; and reduce Canadians' private savings.
The Liberal government's own Department of Finance has warned the government of the harms this bill would inflict upon Canadian workers, Canadian employers, and Canada's economy. Yet, the Liberals want to steamroll this bill through Parliament.
Again, I would ask, why? What is the impetus driving this tax hike? Where is the crisis?
Finance Canada has reported that the median Canadian senior earns 91% as much as the median Canadian, which is well above the OECD average of 84%. A study by McKinsey & Company found that 83% of Canadians are on track to maintain their living standards into retirement. It seems that Canadians are saving for their retirement already. The Liberal government could take a lesson from Canadians who are saving at a rate of 14.1% of their pay, which is a marked increase from the 1990 rate of 7.7%.
Canadians understand the importance of personal responsibility, of living within one's means, and of fiscal prudence. It is too bad the Liberal government cannot achieve these same understandings.
It is my belief that the people are best served by government policy when such policy supports and provides incentives for Canadians to make sound decisions, such as saving for their future.
This is why Conservatives introduced tax-free savings accounts, TFSAs, to support and provide incentives for Canadians to save for their future. Unfortunately, the Liberal government has chosen to reduce the amount that Canadians can save in TFSAs.
This is also why our Conservatives expanded the guaranteed income supplement, or GIS, as a means of reducing the poverty rate among seniors, those who need it the most. It was a logical policy that actually worked.
I do congratulate the Liberal government for following our lead by increasing the GIS rate by a further 10% in budget 2016. I hope I can stand in this House one day and congratulate them for also restoring the contribution limits to TFSAs.
Today, the poverty rate among seniors is reported to be 3.7%, which is a significant decrease from the rate of 29%, in 1970.
As Charles Lammam and Hugh MacIntyre of the Fraser Institute wrote in the Financial Post on June 22:
Instead of expending political energy on debating CPP expansion in the misguided belief that many middle- and upper-income Canadians are not saving enough for retirement, the focus of public debate should be on how best to help financially vulnerable seniors.
I say, do it today. While savings are up and the poverty rate among seniors is down, I believe that governments ought to concern themselves with the responsibility of supporting our seniors who need support today, especially the 3.7% who remain in poverty. Unfortunately, this bill would do little to support these seniors this year, next year, or the year after that.
This bill proposes an increase in CPP benefits and that Canadians wait and wait a little longer, and wait a little longer yet, for the next 40 years. If the prevailing trend is that Canadians are saving more and investing and doing their own planning and strategizing for their futures, why is the government not supporting those responsible decisions? Canadians are speaking with their actions when it comes to planning for their retirement, and this bill before us today would undermine Canadians' ability to plan for their future by saving. The finance department's own analysis projects a 7% reduction in private savings over the long run if higher CPP contributions are imposed upon Canadians.
In 1964, the Liberal minister who was tasked with establishing the CPP, the Hon. Judy LaMarsh, stated that the CPP “is not intended to provide all the retirement income which many Canadians wish to have. This is a matter of individual choice and, in the government’s view, should properly be left to personal savings and private pension plans.” Who in this House can disagree with that logic?
Allowing Canadians their individual choices seems a natural conclusion, but not for the current Liberal government. The Liberal government remains bent on steamrolling this bill through Parliament and right across every paycheque, every Canadian worker, and the bottom line of every Canadian employer. Canadians are not comfortable with the proposals in this bill. Seventy per cent of employed Canadians oppose a CPP expansion if it means a wage freeze. This begs the question of whether wage freezes could result from this tax hike. According to the Canadian Federation of Independent Business, “Two thirds of small firms say they will have to freeze or cut salaries and over a third say they will have to reduce hours or jobs in their business in response to a CPP/QPP hike”. Also, according to the CFIB, a full 70% of small-business owners disagree with the notion that the proposed CPP increase is modest and would have a limited impact on their businesses. The CFIB also found that 90% of small business owners think it is important to have public consultations before any deal is finalized.
The C.D. Howe Institute has also issued a report showing that the Liberals' CPP proposal would not benefit low-income workers. Low-income workers would see their premiums go up, but the net increase in their retirement benefits would remain low. This is because higher CPP payments would be offset by clawbacks in GIS benefits.
Surveys have shown that over one-third of employed Canadians say that the proposed tax increases are unaffordable. Canadians know that the proposed Liberal hike would hurt them. Moreover, over 80% of Canadians want the government to further consult before making its decision, according to another public survey.
Canadians deserve to be trusted. They deserve the freedom to make their own choices on where and how they will save their hard-earned money for their retirement. Canadians also deserve to be heard on this matter. The current Liberal government seems motivated to launch consultations on everything under their paper sun. Why not consult Canadians on this tax hike?
View Mel Arnold Profile
CPC (BC)
View Mel Arnold Profile
2016-11-17 16:05 [p.6875]
Mr. Speaker, our Conservative government did many things to assist seniors. The number one thing we did was to create jobs that kept people working in good-paying jobs so they could afford to retire.
The Liberal government has done nothing in one year to create one solid job.
View Mel Arnold Profile
CPC (BC)
View Mel Arnold Profile
2016-11-17 16:06 [p.6875]
Mr. Speaker, the challenge with this bill before us today is that people today will not see any benefit from it. As I said in my speech, the proposed benefits from this will only be seen 40 years down the road, long after the people who need work, who need jobs, and who need help in their retirement have passed, unfortunately.
View Mel Arnold Profile
CPC (BC)
View Mel Arnold Profile
2016-11-17 16:08 [p.6875]
Mr. Speaker, I have to agree that the government is out of touch with small business.
I came here with a background in small business. I understood what it took to meet payroll every two weeks, every month, and to worry if there would be jobs for my employees next months, six months down the road, and so on.
The last thing I needed as a business owner was more taxes, more payroll taxes, and higher costs for my business. Everything I have seen promised by the government for small business has been chopped, and everything else it is doing is attacking small business.
View Mel Arnold Profile
CPC (BC)
View Mel Arnold Profile
2016-11-17 17:42 [p.6888]
Mr. Speaker, I appreciate the ability to stand to pose a question of the member for Fleetwood—Port Kells, but I really wanted to pose a question of the previous speaker, the member for Yukon. I wanted to ask him what his constituents think about this additional tax, along with an additional carbon tax, along with tax credits that have been cut. It is going to be tax upon tax upon tax from the present government.
I wonder if the member for Fleetwood—Port Kells would say if he has had consultation with the member for Yukon, whose riding is going to be severely impacted by these increased taxes, about what he is hearing from these northern communities, these remote communities, that are going to be incredibly impacted by the increased taxes.
View Mel Arnold Profile
CPC (BC)
Madam Speaker, the increased TFSA amounts that our government introduced encouraged people to save and prepare for their own future and their own retirement. The limits or amounts were realistic for the people who could save. Not everyone is able to save through workplace agreements.
Do the member and his government not realize they can reduce the burden on future governments by providing means and encouragement for savings through the increased TFSAs for those who are able to prepare for their own retirement, or will the government choose to discourage personal savings and make far more people reliant on governments of the future?
Results: 1 - 7 of 7

Export As: XML CSV RSS

For more data options, please see Open Data