Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 11/10/2017 (249 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
OTTAWA — A taxpayer advocacy group is hosting a town hall meeting Thursday on Ottawa’s controversial tax reforms, which continue to fuel blowback across the country.
"It's always important to have multiple forums for this sort of thing," said Todd MacKay, prairie director of the Canadian Taxpayers Federation. "Hopefully, we can provide some clarity, because there's a lot of confusion out there."
The CTF event will have a tax consultant answer questions about how the proposed changes work, and the advocacy group said it will pass along’ responses to Ottawa. At least one Tory MP, Candice Bergen, will be attending.
In mid-July, federal Finance Minister Bill Morneau released a three-pronged plan to end tax provisions used by a growing number of small businesses, which he blamed for creating an "unfair playing field."
The changes sparked a ferocious outcry from doctors who incorporated their practices to pay their staff and office expenses, and farmers worried about passing down their family operations.
Some backbench Liberals have also spoken out against the reforms, but all seven Manitoba Liberal MPs have voiced their support (some suggest the changes should be tweaked or phased in).
Though Morneau hasn't visited Manitoba to talk about the plan, he and two Liberal colleagues have visited 10 other Canadian cities, including Regina.
Finance Canada also received 21,000 online written submissions in the 11-week summer consultation period ending Oct. 2, though it wouldn’t say Wednesday how many came from Manitoba. The government hasn’t yet announced its final plan.
"We have listened to small-business owners, professionals and experts during the consultation on tax planning using private corporations, and will act on what we have heard," Morneau's spokeswoman, Chloé Luciani-Girouard, said.
Last month, Morneau held a town hall in Oakville, Ont., which was streamed on Facebook. The event devolved twice into shouting from the audience.
The government attracted more controversy this week, when the Canada Revenue Agency said it would start taxing employee discounts, which would mean managers would have to log such things as apparel purchased by retail workers and free or reduced-cost meals for food-service employees. On Wednesday, the Liberals blamed bureaucrats for the move, which it said it will reverse.
Thursday’s event runs 7-9 p.m. at the Canad Inns Destination Centre Fort Garry.
Parliamentary bureau chief
In Ottawa, Dylan enjoys snooping through freedom-of-information requests and asking politicians: "What about Manitoba?"