On Monday, January 15, 2018, the Ontario Chamber of Commerce (OCC) provided the Ontario government with 11 recommendations for the upcoming provincial budget that will help businesses manage costs and secure the province’s competitive advantage. The submission, presented to the Standing Committee on Finance and Economic Affairs, calls on the government to implement taxation reforms and smart infrastructure and transportation spending to maximize growth and benefit all regions of Ontario.
11 recommendations include:
1. Tax reforms for increased competitiveness
1.1 Restore efforts to standardize the Business Education Tax (BET).
1.2 Reduce the Corporate Income Tax rate from 11.5 percent to 10 percent.
1.3 Reduce Ontario’s marginal income tax rate.
1.4 Targeted reductions in the Employer Health Tax (EHT).
1.5 Create a bracketed small business deduction and delay taxation on corporate income growth to overcome Ontario’s scale-up challenge
1.6 Preserve tax exemptions of private health and dental plans.
2. Spending to maximize growth
2.1 Dedicate revenue for the Metrolinx The Big Move’s Next Wave priority projects.
2.2 Make expanding natural gas access to rural communities a priority.
3. Spending reforms to benefit all of Ontario
3.1 Use value-based procurement to more effectively use government dollars, inject innovation into government services and save money in the long term.
3.2 Reform the provincial interest arbitration system to reflect the current capacity of Ontario municipalities to pay for increased service costs.
3.3 Gradually increase the “Heads and Beds Levy” on institutions to $100 per bed and then tie future yearly increases to the Consumer Price Index (CPI).
Read the full pre-budget submission here.