September 27, 2017
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau;
Minister of Small Business Bardish Chagger;
Minister of Finance Bill Morneau;
Member of Parliament Sheila Malcolmson, Nanaimo Ladysmith;
Member of Parliament Gord Johns, Courtenay-Alberni;
Re: Opposition to Proposed Upcoming Federal Tax Legislation Changes
The Greater Nanaimo Chamber of Commerce wishes to register its disappointment in the lack of meaningful consultation prior to committing to major changes outlined in tax legislation currently tabled in the House or awaiting legislative language and activity at the Committee level.
Belief in the philosophy and the very culture of entrepreneurship in Canada is at stake. At issue are the accepted, legitimate, and legal mechanics that have for decades defined the sacrosanct relationship between government and small business. If the federal government continues down this path, what we risk compromising is small business’s ability to “do what we do”: meaningfully fund the local soccer team, hockey team, rotary clubs, hospital, hospice, soup kitchen and food bank. Thus, these changes not only threaten the “golden goose” of Canada’s economy, but are also poised to undermine small business’s role as cornerstones of Canada’s communities.
We echo others with our respectful request that the Minister consider:
1) extending the unreasonably short consultation period beyond 75 days (noting that the last such changes of this magnitude, forty years ago, involved a two-year consultation period); and
2) referring the entire conversation on tax modernization and simplification to a non-partisan Royal Commission and give this issue the attention it deserves;
3) including stakeholder input involving the 70+ organizations like ours that belong to the Canadian Business Taxpayers Fairness Coalition in future recommendations.
We are writing confident in the support of 90% of our membership of 700 who qualify as ‘small businesses’ — the backbone of our community!
KIM SMYTHE, CEO & President per
GREG PHILLIPS, KELLY WHITTON,
Co-Chairs on behalf of the unanimous support of the Board of Directors for this action.