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Results: 1 - 15 of 66
Trevor McGowan
View Trevor McGowan Profile
Trevor McGowan
2019-04-29 15:33
Thank you, Mr. Chair.
I will provide a short overview of each of these measures in the order in which they appear in the bill.
The first measure in part 1 provides a temporary enhanced capital cost allowance, which is essentially tax depreciation in respect of the purchase of new zero-emission vehicles. These are fully electric, fully powered by hydrogen or a plug-in hybrid with a battery capacity of at least 15 kilowatt hours. It also increases the capital cost limit for zero-emission passenger vehicles to $55,000, in terms of what can be depreciated, from the existing limit of $30,000 for passenger vehicles.
The second measure removes the requirement that property be of national importance in order to qualify for the enhanced tax incentives for donations of cultural property, while retaining the requirement that the property be of outstanding significance.
The next measure introduces further enhanced rates of capital cost allowance. It provides an enhanced 100% capital cost allowance rate, which provides a full first-year deduction in respect of certain manufacturing and processing machinery as well as certain green-energy equipment. In addition, it provides, effectively, three times the normal first-year allowance for other sorts of depreciable property, that's to say, almost every other type of depreciable capital property.
The next measure relates to kinship care programs. It ensures that the receipt of amounts under a provincial kinship care program will not adversely affect entitlement to the Canada workers benefit. In addition, it ensures that such amounts are not included in computing a recipient's income and do not reduce entitlement or include it for purposes of determining means-tested benefits.
The next measure removes taxable income as a factor in determining a Canadian-controlled private corporation’s entitlement to the enhanced scientific research and experimental development tax credit, while retaining the taxable capital factor that is currently in place.
The next measure relates to providing support for Canadian journalism. In particular, it provides three separate benefits. First, it allows registered journalism organizations to be qualified donees for income tax purposes, which, in addition to providing an exemption from income tax, allows them to issue charitable donation receipts. Second, it introduces a 25% refundable tax credit on salary or wages paid to eligible newsroom employees for certain qualified Canadian journalism organizations. This credit will be subject to a cap on labour costs of $55,000 per eligible employee, which works out to a $13,750 tax credit benefit per employee. Third, it provides a temporary, non-refundable 15% tax credit on amounts paid by individuals in respect of certain digital news subscriptions.
The next measure introduces the Canada training credit, which is a refundable tax credit providing support for eligible training fees for individuals between the ages of 25 and 64. This credit accumulates at an amount of $250 per eligible year in a notional account up to a lifetime limit of $5,000. The credit can be applied against up to half the cost of eligible training fees.
The next measure updates a cross-reference in the Income Tax Act relating to the use of cannabis for medical purposes, to reflect the currently existing regulations that apply to cannabis.
The next measure applies in respect of the rules in the Income Tax Act that prevent the inappropriate multiplication of access to the small business deduction. Currently there is an exception that applies where farming or fishing products are sold to an arm's-length co-operative organization. This measure would expand that exemption, providing a benefit to affected farmers in any case where a farmer or a fisher sells products to an arm's-length corporation, and removing the requirement that the purchaser be a co-operative corporation.
The next measure extends the currently existing mineral exploration tax credit for an additional five years. This credit provides a 15% credit in respect of certain grassroots mineral exploration.
The next measure applies in respect of certain communal organizations and in particular it ensures that income earned in a deemed trust that arises in respect of those communal organizations retains its character as it is flowed out through the deemed trust to the members of the congregation.
The next measure relates to the homebuyers' plan, and has two components. First, it increases the homebuyers' plan withdrawal limit from $25,000 to $35,000. In addition the measure also provides that, subject to certain conditions, individuals who experience the breakdown of a marriage or common-law partnership can be permitted to participate in the homebuyers' plan even if they do not meet the first time homebuyer requirement.
The next measure relates to liability for income tax in respect of income earned in a tax-free savings account. Generally, income earned in TFSA is tax free with two important exceptions. One is income from carrying on a business in the TFSA. Most commonly, that can be thought of as day-trading types of activities. Currently, TFSAs are liable to tax on income from carrying on a business. The trustee of the trust, generally the financial institution providing it, is jointly and severally liable. This measure would cap the liability of the trustee at the amount of assets in the trust. In addition, it would extend joint and several liability to the TFSA holder, who would be in the best position to know whether or not the TFSA is carrying on a business.
The next measure relates to relief from overpayments of salary or wages. It is intended to help alleviate cash flow issues where an amount is paid to an employee and an amount is withheld in respect of the salary or wages and remitted to the government. Under the current tax rules, the employee would have to reimburse their employer the gross amount of the payment and apply to the Canada Revenue Agency for a refund of the taxes that have been withheld and remitted. This allows the employee to return to the employer only the net amount they received, and allows the employer to obtain the refund of the withheld taxes from the Canada Revenue Agency, thus helping to alleviate the cash flow issued for the amount that had been withheld but not received by the employee.
The next measure relates to providing enhanced capital cost allowance rates under clauses 43.1 and 43.2 of the regulations, and these are at rates of 30% and 50%. These are extended in respect of eligible electric vehicle charging stations and a broader range of electrical energy storage equipment. It's important to notice an accelerated 100% capital cost allowance rate is going to be provided in respect of the accelerated investment incentive I'd mentioned earlier. That would apply in respect of this measure as well. They would have a permanent 30% or 50% capital cost allowance rate but also be eligible for the temporary accelerated investment incentive measure.
View Pierre-Luc Dusseault Profile
NDP (QC)
No, I don't think there is a link.
My question is: why place the decision in the hands of the employer rather than in the hands of the employee who was overpaid? Why is the employer made responsible for the decision to agree, and tell the employee to reimburse the net, after-tax amount?
Why was the decision put in the hands of the employer, and not in the hands of the employee who could benefit from this measure?
View   Profile
2019-04-29 18:03
Thank you.
The issue there is that certainly this requires a lot of changes to employers' payroll systems and employers' processes.
There was a desire to put in place a solution that could be acted on quickly. We knew that the federal government intended to act on this quickly in the case of Phoenix, and we wanted to extend it to private sector employers as well. However, we did not want to put an undue burden on private sector employers with regard to updating their payroll systems and their processes.
We certainly hope and expect, based on our discussions with stakeholders, that it will also be rolled out and put into place in the private sector, as it simplifies life for employees. I think it simplifies life for employers as well, who aren't interested in collecting more than they have to from their employees.
View Pierre-Luc Dusseault Profile
NDP (QC)
Fine.
Should the employer decide to take advantage of this new system, would he take back from the employee only the net amount equal to his salary, and then the employee would reimburse the employer? Would the employer in fact reimburse the total amount? Should this not be up to the government instead? I'm just trying to put things in the proper order.
Will the government then reimburse tax deductions to the employer, and the overpayment of benefits like the pension plan, and taxes withheld?
View   Profile
2019-04-29 18:05
This is really just dealing with the question of taxes and Canada pension plan contributions and employment insurance premiums that are withheld by the employer. Presently, if an employee is repaying their employer, let's say, a year or two after the overpayment, they're repaying the full amount of the salary that they received plus the tax and other contributions that were withheld from that salary. Effectively, the employee would then receive that difference, those taxes, the employment insurance and CPP contributions, back from the Canada Revenue Agency when filing their return.
What we're proposing in this bill is that the employer would only have to collect the salary portion and the CRA would return the difference to the employer, so the employer is no longer acting as a go-between.
View Greg Fergus Profile
Lib. (QC)
Thank you very much, Mr. Maxson.
With respect to these provisions in the law, there is no doubt that many public sector employees were affected by them in the case of the Phoenix pay system.
I imagine you held consultations with the public sector unions. Did you consult them? What was the outcome of the discussions that led to these provisions?
Pierre Leblanc
View Pierre Leblanc Profile
Pierre Leblanc
2019-04-29 18:07
Thank you very much for the question.
Yes, we held discussions with union representatives, especially during ongoing meetings between government and union representatives to discuss Phoenix-related issues, in our case.
The unions' response has been positive, to date. They are satisfied with this measure and the government's flexibility around this proposal.
Leanne Shumka
View Leanne Shumka Profile
Leanne Shumka
2018-10-18 8:51
Good morning.
My name is Leanne Shumka. I am here representing the Canadian Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators, also known as CASFAA.
CASFAA represents many personnel across Canadian post-secondary institutions who are dedicated advocates in helping Canadian students achieve financial wellness and success.
To build Canada's economic growth and ensure our competitiveness, we believe that the following three recommendations can help ensure student success.
First, allow students an adequate time to establish stability before beginning the regime of student loan repayment. This can be achieved by reinstating the Canada student loan interest subsidy for the six months following the completion of studies.
Second, empower post-secondary students who acquire loans through the Canada student loans program with mandatory entrance and exit loan counselling.
Third, reduce the educational gaps between indigenous and non-indigenous Canadians by providing a Canada student grant program for indigenous students.
CASFAA firmly believes that these measures will help to not only instill and develop financial literacy and awareness in our students but also position them to immediately engage in our economy when they have completed school.
Thank you for your time and consideration.
Lori Noht
View Lori Noht Profile
Lori Noht
2018-10-16 8:59
Thank you.
My name is Lori Nolt, and I'm representing the Canadian Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators.
CASFAA represents many personnel across Canadian post-secondary institutions. We're dedicated advocates in helping Canadian students achieve financial wellness and success. To build Canada's economic growth and ensure competitiveness, we believe that the following three recommendations can help ensure student success.
First, we should allow students adequate time to establish stability before beginning the regime of student loan repayments. This can be achieved by reinstating the Canada student loan interest subsidy for the six months following completion of studies. Second, we should empower post-secondary students to acquire loans though the Canada student loan program, with mandatory entrance and exit counselling. Third, we should reduce the educational gaps between indigenous and non-indigenous Canadians by providing a Canada student loan grant program for indigenous students.
CASFAA believes that these measures will not only help to instill and develop financial literacy and awareness in our students but also position them to immediately engage in our economy when they have completed school.
Thank you so much for your time and consideration.
View Pierre-Luc Dusseault Profile
NDP (QC)
Thank you, Mr. Chair.
Thank you for being here with us today.
My question is addressed to Ms. Wilson and is about health care and the application of the Canada Health Act. Witnesses we heard earlier—they were officials from Health Canada and Finance Canada, if memory serves—told us that the bill authorizes the provinces to be reimbursed for funds that were withheld. However, we now hear that that was already being done. You described a scenario that demonstrated that.
Could you remind the committee about when this happened? I'm wondering why we are studying this procedure if it is already being applied. If you could describe a specific case, I would appreciate that.
Amanda Wilson
View Amanda Wilson Profile
Amanda Wilson
2018-05-08 16:23
From our understanding, it happened recently with Quebec. I think it was in 2016. There was around $9 million withheld from the transfer. Following the introduction of legislation to disallow user fees, Quebec was reimbursed that money.
If you look at Health Canada data going back the past 15 years, there are a few other individual cases where much smaller amounts have been reimbursed. Whether or not it's something that's been informally within the purview of Health Canada—with this legislation being an attempt to formalize that and provide consistency across the board—you would have to ask Health Canada if there is a need to formalize a practice that's already happening on an informal basis. Certainly we see this as a positive step, if provinces or territories are not complying. Once they have already crossed that line, it gives them an added incentive to come back into the fold. There have been some cases where the money has already been reimbursed.
View Dan Albas Profile
CPC (BC)
Thank you again, Mr. Chair.
I'll start by going to Ms. Wilson from the Canadian Health Coalition.
Ms. Wilson, clauses 218 and 219 amend section 25 of the FPFAA to allow for the reimbursement of the Canada health transfer deductions to provinces and territories, provided they take certain steps to eliminate extra billing and user fees in the delivery of public health care.
Has your organization supported those provisions? I didn't quite get it from your opening statement.
Amanda Wilson
View Amanda Wilson Profile
Amanda Wilson
2018-05-08 16:58
I think we're supportive of those provisions. The asterisk there is that it's only addressing one part of the picture. It's a positive step, but it's certainly not going to address everything. The challenge is that those other steps that we would like to see would not be steps within the budget, but within the Canada health transfer.
View Dan Albas Profile
CPC (BC)
If there is a formal process laid out in law...one of the things the officials said this morning was that there wasn't an ability until amendments were put forward for reimbursement in those kinds of cases. Would you agree, though, that it somewhat allows for provinces to push the rules a bit and thus gives them a way out, so to speak, if there's perhaps a practice? Would that not be creating somewhat of a moral hazard to encourage more activity that is on the borderline, or even past that line?
Amanda Wilson
View Amanda Wilson Profile
Amanda Wilson
2018-05-08 16:59
Hypothetically, it's possible that provinces and territories would see this as a way to skirt the line. The reality is that we're already seeing across the board a lot of instances where they're turning a blind eye or are explicitly allowing practices outside of the Canada Health Act. It's possible, I would say, because it's already happening. I would like to think that provinces and territories are exploring those options because they feel like they don't have any other choices. If there's a way to provide added incentives to come back within the Canada Health Act, then hopefully that's a good thing.
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