The proposed tax changes being contemplated by the Trudeau Liberal Government remain the single largest concern that I am hearing about on a daily basis.
Although I have heard some support for these potential tax increases the overwhelming response to date has been very strongly opposed. I have also heard some very specific concerns from a number of local accountants.
When the Prime Minister was in Kelowna last week, he stated that “people who make $50,000 should not pay more taxes than people who make $250,000”.
I believe most would agree with that statement.
Unfortunately, as many accountants have taken the time to share with me, this statement from the Prime Minister is not even remotely true or even close to being accurate.
In reality a small business owner, doctor or other person would indeed be paying tens of thousands more than one who earns $50,000 per year.
This is one of the reasons why there is such a large amount of outrage from many small business owners who feel that the Prime Minister either does not understand the impacts of our existing tax laws or is intentionally misstating them in an effort to draw public support for the proposed tax increases.
From my perspective, I will grant the Prime Minister the benefit of the doubt and assume he misspoke with this comment as can inadvertently occur with any elected official. For the record I will continue to oppose these tax changes in Ottawa and encourage the Liberal Government to be more transparent with their talking points.
For an update on another matter I have raised in a previous reports.
Some of you may recall I have mentioned that the federal agency responsible for regulating banks and other financial institutions has issued new enforcement regulations that issue a blanket prohibition on the use of terms like “bank”, “banker”, and “banking” by basically any entity other than the big banks. Credit unions, who have traditionally been allowed to use these common terms would no longer be allowed to do so. This would not only create consumer confusion it would also impose more costs and regulatory compliance burdens on Credit Unions that in turn would be passed onto Credit Union members.
Suffice to say these proposed restrictions also generated overwhelming public opposition throughout our region as well as many other regions across Canada. As a result the Financial Regulator has temporarily suspended this enforcement action while it begins a series of consultations.
I believe this should be taken a step further.
Currently I am working on a bill that would amend the Bank Act to make it clear that Credit Unions can continue to use terms such as “bank”, “banker”, and “banking” without fear of The Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions (OSFI) coming after them. I had hoped the Liberal Government would introduce similar legislation but in the absence of any my only recourse would be this private members bill.
My question this week – Would you support a Private Members Bill to amend the Bank Act and allow Credit Unions the continued use of terms such as such as “bank”, “banker”, and “banking”?
I can be reached at Dan.Albas@parl.gc.ca or call toll free 1-800-665-8711
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Dan Albas is the Member of Parliament for the riding of Central Okanagan-Similkameen-Nicola.