Income Tax: The Last Six Months
Of Federal Activity

About

This Report

This is a computer-generated report that shows all of the federal activity with respect to the keyword "Income Tax" over the last six months. This is a demonstration of the power of our government relations automation software.

Hansard

House: 66 Speeches
Senate: 17 Speeches

House Senate

Bills

Active: 0

Regulations

Filed: 0
Proposed: 0

The House

Hon. Pierre Poilievre (Carleton, CPC)

October 15th
Hansard Link

Government Orders

“...hat the governing side has some expertise on this. We have a finance minister who, after increasing income taxes that took effect January 1, 2016, deliberately carried out a massive sale of shares jus...”

Hon. Pierre Poilievre

October 15th
Hansard Link

Government Orders

“... in the first year after these tax changes took effect, the wealthiest 1% paid $4.6 billion less in income taxes while middle-class Canadians paid $800 per family more. How did they pay more? They los...”

Hon. Pierre Poilievre

October 15th
Hansard Link

Government Orders

“...r, the struggling middle class.

We cut the GST from 7% to 6% to 5%. We brought in the working income tax benefit, which gives a 25% pay raise to people who earn between $3,000 and $11,000 a year. We raised the personal exemption so that one million of our poorest working people would no longer pay income tax at all. We lowered the payroll tax, which is one of the most regressive taxes that target...”

Mr. Tom Kmiec (Calgary Shepard, CPC)

October 15th
Hansard Link

Government Orders

“Mr. Speaker, I will begin by telling the member about the so-called middle-income tax break. For Canadians earning $48,000, the tax break was $81.44. If we include an increase...”

Mr. Tom Kmiec (Calgary Shepard, CPC)

October 15th
Hansard Link

Government Orders

“...ot doing that. We have been doing the opposite for the past three years. From this so-called middle-income tax cut, a Canadian who is earning $48,000 is saving $81.44 off their taxes. If we include carbon taxes, increased payroll taxes, depending on the provincial jurisdiction, where they are probably paying higher provincial taxes as well, costs are rising, including the costs of everyday essentials.

There are think tanks that say that the number one item on the average family's pay slip is taxes. They are paying more for taxes than for the essentials of life: rent, food, electricity or natural gas. For the first time ever, the average family is having to pay more in taxes than for anything else. We do not spend enough time talking about how to create more wealth and to broaden the base that has been a way of ensuring that more Canadians and corporations are at least paying a little bit into the system. When we pay into the system, it makes us part of it. There is a certain ownership in what the Government of Canada and what the Parliament of Canada do on our behalf. When we have to put a little money into it, we really do care what is being done with it. (1255)

The Liberals said in their campaign platform that a so-called tax hike on the top 1% would bring in $3 billion more. The Department of Finance then produced an estimate, saying it would bring in an extra $2 billion. The government actually lost money in its first year; $4.5 billion to $4.6 billion less money being brought in. Those are not my numbers. Those are Statistics Canada and CRA numbers, which say the government is bringing in less money than it did before.

The top 1% of income earners pay 20% of all taxes. The top 8% of income earners, including every member in the House, every cabinet minister, are paying half of all taxes right now. That is an incredible amount, just in the share of national revenue, that we are asking an increasingly smaller group of people to pay. It also speaks to the administration and the idea of taxing the rich, fleecing the rich, on a personal income side, which has been a total failure of the government.

Now we have Bill C-82, in which the Liberals want to go after multinational corporations and big business, and I am all for it. It is a fantastic idea. We have a tax treaty of tax treaties. It should be done right. I am glad we are at this point where we can talk about it.

However, where are we talking about the wealth creation to get small businesses and entrepreneurs to start creating more jobs, to want to invest? We had the aborted attempt by the Minister of Finance's department, and by him as well, to tax small businesses more because they were not paying their fair share. I heard loud and clear from general practitioners and small business owners in my riding who were just trying to make ends meet. They wondered how they could keep growing their small family businesses and eke out an existence to pay for the schooling for their kids and to continue living.

Calgary continues to have the highest unemployment rate in Canada. The reason for that is that the Government of Canada is in no way interested in ensuring that the energy industry of Alberta continues humming along. Most high-income earners come from Alberta. The Government of Canada has made changes to the tanker ban on the coast of British Columbia and the introduction of Bill C-69, which has passed through the House and is in another place. Every regulatory and legislative measure that the Government of Canada has been able to use to constrict and put the energy industry of Alberta into a pretzel, it has done it. The Liberals have succeeded in reducing our incomes. They have succeeded in undermining the ability of Albertans and Alberta families to make a living. They are not helping to create the wealth that they want to tax. We should be starting the conversation with how we can ensure people can create wealth for themselves and the Government of Canada can tax a reasonable amount from them to pay for common, public services that we all get to enjoy.

For multinational corporations, what we are talking about in this tax treaty is base erosion. They are using a digital economy to shift around so-called profits, and this is primarily used by big businesses. The ability of small businesses to do this is very limited because they need access to high-paid tax lawyers, lobbyists and accountants who know the details of these tax treaties, who can read the different tax treaties between different countries and take advantage of specific provisions in them.

After the paradise papers and the Panama papers, I think there is a general understanding among parliamentarians in both houses that something has to be done. It is not just in North America and in Canada that base erosion and profit-shifting for large multinationals is getting out of control. It is happening in European and developing countries as well. With the digital economy and the ability to cite their so-called work locations almost anywhere they wish, it has become profitable for companies to engage in this type of tax avoidance.

We also have to remember that they are trying to avoid taxes, sometimes punishing taxes, that limit their ability to continue working, to continue generating a profit for shareholders. If they are co-operatives, it limits their ability to provide a return to the members of the co-operatives. It goes back to the notion of whether we are creating an opportunity to create wealth. Instead, we usually talked about how we can tax more.

Another example is that during the whole cannabis decriminalization and legalization, the discussion primarily in the public was about how much taxes the Government of Canada would generate through the legalization provisions it had introduced. Oftentimes we did not talk about the potential for wealth creation through these businesses, through legalizing this one sector of the illegal economy, the black market that already exists. (1300)

The United States will not be a party to these international tax treaties that Canada and many other countries have, to this multinational effort on the base erosion of profit shifting, although it would be in its best interest to do so because it stands to gain quite a bit from it as well.

Canada's competitiveness is further eroding. We do not participate in measures such as this. The provisions in our federal corporate income taxes and the tax rates in comparison to those in the United States make us not competitive. ...”

Mr. Garnett Genuis (Sherwood Park—Fort Saskatchewan, CPC)

October 15th
Hansard Link

Government Orders

“...personal exemption. We increased the amount of money that a Canadian could earn before they pay any income tax. All of our tax measures were targeted on the income tax side and were targeted at those who needed the relief the most. We are very proud of that...”

Mr. Kelly McCauley (Edmonton West, CPC)

October 5th
Hansard Link

Private Member's Business

“...d introduced Bill C-399,, the fairness for persons with disabilities act. This bill would amend the Income Tax Act to reduce the threshold for the number of hours necessary for an activity to be eligi...”

Mr. Arif Virani (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, Lib.)

October 4th
Hansard Link

Government Orders

“...d territorial child support laws require parents to disclose specific income information, including income tax returns, and set out penalties and consequences if a parent fails to disclose this inform...”

Mr. David Tilson (Dufferin—Caledon, CPC)

October 4th
Hansard Link

Government Orders

“...hat specific example in mind, there are many people who are self-employed, and just providing their income tax return does not reveal what their actual income is.”

Mr. Mel Arnold (North Okanagan—Shuswap, CPC)

October 4th
Hansard Link

Government Orders

“...ress some of the ways individuals are avoiding payments, such as by working for cash and not paying income tax so that none of it is reported to Revenue Canada? If it is under the table, it cannot be ...”

Ms. Jennifer O'Connell (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance (Youth Economic Opportunity), Lib.)

September 28th
Hansard Link

Government Orders

“...nce. We are proposing rules to prevent taxpayers from inappropriately reducing or avoiding Canadian income tax through treaty shopping and other transactions or arrangements.

Canada is active in...”

Mr. Jamie Schmale (Haliburton—Kawartha Lakes—Brock, CPC)

September 28th
Hansard Link

Government Orders

“...o be paid. Moderate estimates indicate annual losses of anywhere from 4% to 10% of global corporate income tax revenues, or $177 billion to $425 billion annually. In Canada, we are looking at somewhere between $3 billion and $6 billion annually in taxes that could go to pay for any number of important programs or projects to benefit all Canadians. It might even buy us a pipeline or maybe pay off a third of the annual deficit, if the Liberals were so inclined.

Leaders of the OECD and G20 countries, as well as over 60 other countries, jointly developed 15 actions to tackle tax avoidance, improve the coherence of international tax rules and ensure more transparent tax regimes. The purpose of the MLI is to allow signatories to swiftly implement tax treaty related measures to prevent BEPS. The goal of implementing the measures in the MLI is to end treaty abuse and treaty shopping by transposing, in existing tax treaties, these jurisdictions' commitment to minimally include in their tax treaties tools to ensure that these treaties were used the way the signatories initially envisioned. Once implemented, the MLI would modify up to 75 existing bilateral tax treaties with, at minimum, the adoption of the OECD treaty-abuse and improved dispute-resolution standards.

It is important to note that there are scales on which Canada can adopt the 15 actions included in the MLI. Its treaty-abuse standard consists of two parts. First is an amended preamble, suggesting that covered tax treaties are intended to eliminate double taxation without creating opportunities for non-taxation or reduced taxation through tax evasion or avoidance. Second is a broad anti-avoidance rule, referred to as the principal purpose test, or PPT. Under the PPT, any tax benefit could be denied where it was reasonable to conclude that one of the main reasons for the transaction was to avoid paying taxes unless it was established that granting the benefit would be in accordance with the object and purposes of the relevant provisions within the treaty.

The other minimum standard is the adoption of mandatory binding arbitration to assist in resolving treaty-based disputes in a timely and efficient manner. Initially, Canada took a conservative approach toward the MLI, agreeing to implement the minimum standards. However, recently, the government has shifted that approach and has announced its intention to remove some of its initial reservations on optional MLI provisions, namely, those pertaining to dividends, article 8; capital gains, article 9; dual residency tie-breaker rules, article 4; and relief from double taxation, article 5.

I believe that this is an important factor to consider, because following ratification, Canada would be unable to add any reservations. However, signatories could withdraw or narrow a reservation following ratification.

The provisional MLI position of each country indicates the tax treaties it intends to cover, the options it has chosen and the reservations it has made. Signatories can amend their MLI positions until ratification. After ratification, countries choose to opt in with respect to optional provisions or to withdraw reservations. This makes the debate and analysis of Bill C-82 very important at committee stage. (1030)

Make no mistake, the Conservatives do support, in principle, Bill C-82. We want a full vetting at committee and we want to ensure the bill will meet the expectations of Canadians from coast to coast to coast. I think everyone in the House would agree we must get this right.

I would like to turn our attention now to the four additional provisions added to Bill C-82.

The first addition is to implement a one-year holding period to access treaty-based withholding tax reductions on dividends under a covered tax agreement. A covered tax agreement, or CTA, is an agreement for the avoidance of double taxation enforced between countries to the MLI and for which countries have made a notification that they wish to modify the agreement using the MLI. Double taxation is a taxation principle referring to income taxes paid twice on the same amount of earned income. It could occur when income is taxed at ...”

Mr. Matthew Dubé (Beloeil—Chambly, NDP)

September 28th
Hansard Link

Government Orders

“..., when we have an opportunity to speak with constituents at various events held in our ridings, the income tax act and the tax agreements signed with other countries may seem like issues that are not top of mind. Our constituents are focused on daily life, sending their children to school, looking after their health and managing their own budgets.

The thing that stands out to people is the fundamental inequity of this situation. People pay their taxes and the Canada Revenue Agency chooses to relentlessly go after single mothers who may have simply misunderstood a form or whose situation may have changed—maybe they separated from their child's father for example. I personally know individuals who have gone through shameful situations. I am not sure if my colleagues have had the chance to read the letters that the CRA sends those people. Even as members of the Standing Committee on Finance, I wonder if we would be able to understand the pages and pages of text and wording that is so complicated it has no meaning. We should not have to hire an accountant or, in some cases, a lawyer, because of the actions of an agency that is supposed to be a sound manager of taxpayers' money.

This situation is bad enough, but it is even worse when we consider that CEOs, the wealthiest individuals and unfortunately quite often friends of those in power, benefit from all these exemptions, all these poorly drafted laws, all these agreements that do not go far enough. Unlike the single mother, to continue with that example, they are able to take vacations in Barbados. Then they leave their money there while they are at it. It is unacceptable.

As a society, we cannot accept that. Our collective wealth, the social contract in which we are engaged as citizens of a society by paying taxes, and the work we call on the government to do on our behalf with our money, is one of the most fundamental aspects of our society. When we consider that some people do not want to fulfill this contract, do not want to meet this commitment, then we realize that we have failed somehow. Somewhere the government has failed in one of its basic duties.

These policies, these failures, are opening up a deep, dark gap of inequality between the rich and the not-so-rich. It is odd, because the Prime Minister loves talking about the middle class and those working hard to join it. In reality, when I am in my riding, I do not see a middle class and people working hard to join it. What I see is that certain citizens are honest and hard-working, and others do not need to lift a finger because they know full well that they will always enjoy the favour of the people in power. That is what is deplorable. (1210)

In my riding, there are some people who are relatively well off. They are the kind of people the Prime Minister loves to go after and brand as cheats. They are business owners running small and medium-sized companies, and to some people, they may appear to belong to a more privileged class. They have earned a good living and worked very hard on their businesses, but they are not the ones who should be targeted.

There are also people in my riding who struggle to put food on the table and can barely scrape together their rent or mortgage payments. In terms of means and lifestyle, these people could not be further apart. However, they have one thing in common, and it is what motivates me as an MP. They are all honest, and they all believe this: (1215) [English]

“A rising tide raises all ships.”[Translation]

The idea is that we live in a society where the wealth we share should benefit us all. They agree on that. The issue is the wealthiest 1%, which sometimes means literally 1% of the population but sometimes means Liberal Party donors who are friends with the Minister of Finance. They are the ones benefiting from a system that is totally broken.

Let us dig into the substance of the bill. Kudos to the member for Sherbrooke, who has been doing excellent work as our national revenue critic. He is doing amazing work on this extremely complex issue. Some people find this hard to believe, but he is Canada's youngest ever federal MP. His hard work got him re-elected, and he is so up on his issues that he can handle this extremely complicated file.

I also want to give a shout-out to the member for New Westminster—Burnaby, who is doing great work as the NDP's finance critic. That is our job, after all.

We moved a motion in the House in this regard and so did our colleague from Joliette. We are calling on the government to do more and to solve the various problems and failures related the system that I just talked about a few moments ago in my speech.

The bill before us seeks to implement multilateral instruments and to address the fact that some of our agreements with other countries are expiring. These instruments are an important step that will enable to make changes to our multilateral and bilateral agreements more easily.

People need to understand that agreements, accords and conventions that Canada has signed with other countries often exacerbate the problem. We are being told that all of these agreements are being signed to prevent double taxation. For example, a business or individual would have to pay taxes in Canada or another country. However, the legislation and other aspects of the legal framework need to be updated because they facilitate tax evasion and tax avoidance, even though ideally they should not.

We will support the bill because we think it contains good measures that are a step in the right direction. However, let us be clear. Our support for this bill at second reading is not a blank cheque. We are far from supporting the Liberal government's approach, which has failed to date. The fact that we are supporting this bill also does not excuse the fact that the government has not taken action on any of the other issues related to tax evasion and tax avoidance that are of concern to us.

Let us look at subsection 95(1) of the Income Tax Act and section 5907 of the Income Tax Regulations. Dividends from a foreign subsidiary are exempt from taxes in Canada. That means that there are companies that are making a lot of money and they are even doing business with Quebec and Canadian consumers. They are making their money here but inflating their profits because they are exempt from paying taxes in Canada.

Closing loopholes is just a matter of common sense. We are not talking here about companies that do 95% of their business in other countries and 5% in Canada. We are talking about companies that do the opposite. We are basically talking about companies that conduct most of their business in Canada or the United States but that have opened a bank account in another country where they do almost no business at all. That is a major shortcoming, and the government has still not updated the legislation, even though it would have been quite easy to do. The bill that we are debating contains elements related to tax evasion and tax avoidance, but it does nothing to address the relevant aspects of the law.

It is funny, because earlier today, I heard a Liberal member say this has been one of the government's priorities since its first day in office. The Liberals have been in power for three years now, and nothing has been done despite pressure from civil society, prominent members of society, and even some former Liberal Party candidates. So many Quebeckers have called for action on this. We and our colleagues from other parties have been proud to speak on their behalf. Échec aux paradis fiscaux and the non-partisan Réseau pour la justice fiscale Québec are just two great examples of groups that are standing up and speaking out.

Just as an aside, not to be mean, but that is what happens when the 41 Liberal members from Quebec remain silent. When so many groups and individuals in Quebec are speaking up, those MPs come off as being not only silent, but also deaf because they are not getting their constituents' message.

I find it deeply troubling that no party that has ever been in power is blameless in this matter. I have only to come back to the example I mentioned earlier in my question to a Conservative MP. In the last Parliament, during debate on the bill on the free trade agreement with Panama, which was negotiated and signed by the Conservatives, I raised an extremely important point demonstrating that the issue of tax evasion and tax avoidance is nothing new. For years we have been talking about it, and for years the federal government has failed to take the necessary steps that Canadians expect.

To come back to the agreement with Panama, that country is known to be complicit in tax evasion and tax avoidance. The United States can hardly be called progressive, especially in light of recent events, but even they realized that when making free trade deals and opening up their markets to countries like Panama, it was vital to include a formal requirement demanding the return of any government or taxpayer money that had been stashed away by individuals who refuse to meet their obligations to our society. Through that agreement and other measures, the United States managed to recover some of the money, although there is still a lot of work to be done.

However, what has Canada done about this? We only raised the issue without even discussing the problems associated with environmental protection or labour conditions in Panama. We ignored these crucial issues. Even if we focus on just this one element, the government did nothing when we raised the issue.

This is very worrisome because the government keeps telling us that its negotiations will be based on progressive values and that it will discuss reconciliation with indigenous peoples, gender equality and environmental protection. Naturally, I agree with that. After all, the NDP are proud to raise these issues every day in the House of Commons. (1220)

However, when we have a progressive agenda, we must also promote fairness. We must take action to eliminate the gap between the friends of those in power, the people who can afford to vacation in Barbados and take their wallets with them, and the honest people working hard in our communities, the rich and the not so rich, business people, single mothers and everyone else who is harassed by the Canada Revenue Agency. That has to stop. I am repeating myself, but I have to.

I can only hope that when the government negotiates these agreements, it will recognize that we must continue on this path and demand better conduct from certain rogue international stakeholders. I may be suffering from misplaced optimism because this government has a bad track record on this.

When the Liberals came to power, they boasted that Canada is back, but what is Canada doing? It is allowing Netflix, Facebook, Google, and American multinational corporations to get away with not paying their fair share of taxes. Then it allows Liberal Party billionaire donors and friends of the Minister of Finance to do the same thing and shirk their obligations to our country. Then it allows environmental delinquents to evade their obligations. We do not even respect our own obligations. In addition, Canada keeps exporting arms to countries like Saudi Arabia. On that, we might say that the Liberals are trying to redeem themselves, according to media reports.

All of this is relevant to the debate on Bill C-82 because the bill talks about a multilateral instrument. If Canada really is back, then it should be showing some leadership in helping countries that want to combat tax evasion, tax avoidance and all the other problems I just listed. Instead, Canada is sheltering delinquent players and prolonging a situation that has existed for far too long.

I would like to explain why all of this is so important in a way that the people at home can understand. I do not mean to be condescending—far from it. When I myself get letters from the Canada Revenue Agency, my first reaction is often to wonder what it is all about. When people get these letters, they sometimes ask their friends if they are going to jail, because they cannot understand them. That is how single mothers, sick people and people with disabilities are treated when they try to claim benefits they are entitled to.

The member for Sarnia—Lambton said that this is criminal. She herself rose in the House of Commons to talk about diabetic people being targeted by the Canada Revenue Agency, which is totally unacceptable. However, the Minister of National Revenue keeps bringing up this $1-billion figure. She keeps talking about money, but unless the law and agreements are changed, we are just throwing money out the window. That is a very apt phrase in this case, because, after all, that is what the rich in our society are doing, and it is all the more laughable because this money is landing well outside the federal government's coffers. That is unacceptable.

I would now like to say a few words to all of my constituents. It is all well and good to debate the fiscal code of conduct and the Income Tax Act, but it is important to recognize that the government has consistently failed when it...”

Hon. Pierre Poilievre (Carleton, CPC)

September 28th
Hansard Link

Government Orders

“.... That is exactly what has happened. The average Canadian middle-class family is paying $800 higher income tax today than when the government took office. That is before the carbon tax and before payr...”

Mr. Larry Maguire (Brandon—Souris, CPC)

September 26th
Hansard Link

Government Orders

“...ed with disabled people. It was also his government that expanded disability-related deductions for income tax purposes. Let us never forget that it was the Hon. Jim Flaherty who implemented the regis...”

Hon. Pierre Poilievre (Carleton, CPC)

September 18th
Hansard Link

Oral Questions

“...lure for this particular government. We all know that middle-class families are paying $800 more in income taxes under the government, but we learned that the wealthiest taxpayers, the 1%, are paying ...”

Mr. Steven MacKinnon (Gatineau, Lib.)

June 20th
Hansard Link

Routine Proceedings

“...historic flooding. The petition calls on the government to consider the possibility of amending the Income Tax Act, specifically the section on RRSPs, so that victims of natural disasters can withdraw...”

Mr. Tom Kmiec (Calgary Shepard, CPC)

June 14th
Hansard Link

Routine Proceedings

“... will do this as quickly as I can. The first petition is from 26 constituents of mine regarding the Income Tax Act. They are specifically petitioning the House of Commons, reminding it that up to 40% of persons with disabilities do not apply for disability tax credit. They are calling on the House to support Bill C-399, an act to amend the Income Tax Act, disability tax credit. They want to protect diabetics and patients with rare disease...”

Mr. Tom Kmiec (Calgary Shepard, CPC)

June 14th
Hansard Link

Routine Proceedings

“...rnment of Canada and all members of the House of Commons to support Bill C-399, an act to amend the Income Tax Act regarding the disability tax credit.”

Hon. Pierre Poilievre (Carleton, CPC)

June 14th
Hansard Link

Business of Supply

“...s.

However, unlike other taxes, the costs were not itemized for everyday Canadians. If we pay income tax, we file and we find out what we pay. If we pay HST, we look at our bill and we see how much tax formed part of our purchase price. Therefore, Canadians can generally, if imprecisely, calculate what each tax is costing them. Carbon taxes are far more insidious. Their costs are embedded inside the products and services that people buy but they are not itemized on any receipt. Therefore, if grocers raise the costs of fresh fruits and vegetables to feed our kids, we might assume that they are to blame, when in fact they are not behind the cost increase; rather, it is the government and its carbon tax that is causing that price inflation.

The government is proposing to move forward with this tax to embed all of these price increases in the purchases that Canadians make without telling them what it would cost. One defence it might otherwise have made for this secrecy is that it does not know what it would cost. However, that is not true. I have obtained numerous documents, which I have attempted to table in this House, in which the government has calculated the costs. It says that it has tables in which the costs for the average household is calculated, yet it blacks out the numbers, denying Parliament the information it needs in order to vote on this budget bill. (1025)

I spoke earlier about the principle of no taxation without representation. Well, there can be no representation without information. The government cannot tax what Parliament does not approve, but Parliament cannot approve what it does not know. Therefore, there can be no taxation without information.

The government has that information but refuses to release it. Why? What is the motivation for keeping all of this secret? I think it is the same motivation that a high-priced retailer has when trying to sell an excessively expensive product. They do not put the price on a product, but ask that a person bring the item up to the front and make a psychological decision to buy it. Only after, when one has one's credit card out, does one find out what it costs.

My experience is that when I walk through a retail outlet and there is a product that does not have a price tag on it, it is because it is too expensive and I cannot afford it. That may well be why the government is trying to sell the carbon tax without telling people what it will cost them. Even worse, unlike the retailer who at some point prior to the transaction must reveal the cost, in this case, the Liberals do not even propose to reveal the cost after the purchase is made. In other words, people will be paying sums of money to the government without even knowing they are doing it, because those sums are buried in literally millions of products and services that Canadians buy every week and every day.

We, on this side of this House as Her Majesty’s loyal opposition, cannot countenance this violation of our ancient right to know what the government costs us. That is why I am announcing today that we have put forward over 200 motions to object to the spending bill the government has just tabled before the House. We will keep the government here voting for as long as 30 hours until it releases every single document it has since the last federal election indicating what this tax will cost the average Canadian family.

I notice that we have a very enthusiastic group of Conservatives here who are prepared to stand and do their duty, to stand and defend taxpayers, to stay here all night if they have to, and stay as long as necessary to defend the people they represent. However, there is no enthusiasm on that side of the House of Commons. I hear nothing but deafening silence, and I see nothing but glum faces. Many of the backbenchers on that side are actually decent and conscientious people, but I am sure members will forgive me for saying that they feel no comfort in watching their privileged front bench cover up the facts from their constituents. I know that they will find it miserable to sit there and vote time after time to protect the secrecy of the front bench as it moves forward with this new, insidious, secretive tax. We know that the Liberals have a majority, but we will use our numbers, such as they are, the strong mandate of the official opposition that we have been given, to make it as difficult as possible for the government to pull off this rip-off.

If members want any proof that this is anything but a tax grab, look at how the Liberals are taxing the tax. They propose to impose the GST not just on products people buy but on the carbon tax cost of those products. Let us say that a Canadian buys some furniture at a furniture store, just like any other middle-class suburban family would do to furnish their home. Of course, the furniture would be subject to a goods and services tax, but there is also another tax hidden within the cost of that furniture, and that is the cost of the carbon tax that has been borne by those who produced the furniture and then transported the furniture. (1030)

All of those costs get transferred to the customer. The customer always gets the cost passed down. The government not only proposes that the GST should apply to the furniture but also to the carbon tax cost on that furniture. In other words, it is a tax on a tax.

The Parliamentary Budget Officer says that in the provinces of Alberta and British Columbia alone the federal government will collect a quarter billion dollars in GST on the carbon tax. Imagine what those costs would be right across the country in the form of GST on the carbon tax. Canadians are being forced to pay a tax for the privilege of paying another tax. I asked the government about this and it said this is how the GST works. According to the government, it applies to all the goods and services Canadians buy.

Is the carbon tax a good or a service? I am not sure it is any good except in being of service to the government's plan to take more money from everyday taxpayers. As my friend to the left of me said, it is a disservice to everybody else.

We are calling on the government to release all the documents in its possession. I know the government will try to get out of this voting session tonight by coming up with some phony number that it will invent at the eleventh hour in order to let all of its MPs go home. I want to be very specific about this. We want every single document produced by every single department that calculates the cost of the carbon tax to every single Canadian that has been produced since the last election.

There is no reason why the government cannot do this. We are not looking for commercially sensitive information. What commercial sensitivity could possibly exist in telling people what they are going to have to pay? There is no national security reason the government should not do this, although ironically, the government might go so far as to make an argument for such exemptions. It did use an exemption under an access to information request, that it says in the act that revealing to Canadians the cost of the carbon tax would imperil the government's ability to manage the economy. That was the exemption the government used in the existing Access to Information Act in order to justify withholding information.

Not only will the carbon tax that the Liberals have designed damage the economy, mere knowledge of its cost could be damaging to the government's ability to administer the economy, according to the government. Let us be realistic here. If the carbon tax is going to damage the economy, keeping its cost secret is not going to mitigate those damages. That excuse does not work.

The Liberals say the carbon tax is a provincial policy, that it has nothing to do with them, so they cannot possibly release any information on it. Bill C-74 is a federal government bill introduced in the House of Commons to impose a carbon tax at a national level. If it were simply a provincial issue, we would not need federal legislation, so therefore it is a federal issue.

Then the Liberals say some of these numbers are outdated, that they go back two years. They claim the whole world has changed in two years, so members do not need that crazy old data; they will keep it to themselves. Well, if it is so old, just release it and explain to Canadians why it is not applicable anymore. They should just say the numbers are very high and that they will damage the middle-class Canadian household. They should just tell us that there is no reason to worry because it is old information and it is no longer relevant, that they have new information with which to replace it, and that they will let Canadians look at all those facts and in their wisdom decide who to believe. That objection does not work. (1035)

I am very curious to hear throughout the day specific justifications from members of the government for keeping these costs secret. Even those who support a carbon tax should be in favour of telling people what it costs. If it is worth what it costs, then why not provide those costs and justify them in making the case? However, the government will not do that. It wants to keep those costs secret because if the costs become known, then one of the claims the government has made will be disproven. It has claimed that the carbon tax is going to be revenue neutral. To be revenue neutral the government would have to tell people what it is collecting and what people are paying in the first place.

How can we believe the Liberals are going to neutralize a cost if we do not know what that cost is? If they were really going to neutralize the effect on middle- and working-class households of this new tax, they would first need to say, “Here's what it costs and here's what you're getting back in some other tax reduction”. However, they will not do that because this is not revenue neutral. The reason we know that is because I specifically asked officials with Environment Canada and Finance Canada at the committee whether the government would use the proceeds of the tax to lower other taxes, in other words to let people keep more through income tax savings in order to compensate them for what extra they pay in carbon taxes. The officials in both those departments confirmed that the government intends to do no such thing. It will not use the revenues to reduce any other tax. In fact, it will use these revenues in order to spend more money. That is the Liberals' definition of revenue neutral. If Canadians send it, they will spend it. Saying they are going to raise a tax, but not to worry, they will spend every penny, is not revenue neutral. It is a tax grab.

We know we cannot trust the government on money. Just yesterday, I stood up in the House of Commons and quoted a Fraser Institute study showing that 81% of middle-class Canadians are paying more income tax today than when the Prime Minister took office. The Prime Minister stood up and said, “Th...”

Hon. Pierre Poilievre (Carleton, CPC)

June 13th
Hansard Link

Oral Questions

“...s about the carbon tax cover-up. The Fraser Institute calculates that the Prime Minister has raised income tax on 81% of middle-class families, on average by $800 per family. The PBO says this new car...”

Hon. Pierre Poilievre

June 13th
Hansard Link

Oral Questions

“...re, the co-authors of a Fraser Institute study, entitled, “Measuring the Impact of Federal Personal Income Tax Changes—

Some hon. members: No.”

Hon. Pierre Poilievre

June 13th
Hansard Link

Oral Questions

“Mr. Speaker, the members did not get a chance to hear this. It says, “Yes, most middle-class families are paying more in income taxes” today.”

Mr. Jamie Schmale (Haliburton—Kawartha Lakes—Brock, CPC)

June 12th
Hansard Link

Business of Supply

“...ortfolio to enable us to recycle capital back into U.S. assets, which benefit from a longer federal income tax shield and a lower effective corporate tax rate”.

The latest data from Statistics C...”

Hon. Pierre Poilievre (Carleton, CPC)

June 12th
Hansard Link

Oral Questions

“... nothing to do with CPP payroll taxes. It said that for middle-class Canadians, 80% are paying more income tax since this government took office.

How much more will these same families pay under...”

Ms. Rachael Harder (Lethbridge, CPC)

June 11th
Hansard Link

Private Members' Business

“...that persons living with a disability could be empowered to earn a living. We increased the working income tax benefit, which put more money in the pockets of those living with a disability who were w...”

Hon. Pierre Poilievre (Carleton, CPC)

June 11th
Hansard Link

Oral Questions

“...position on that issue. That same institute says that 81% of middle-class taxpayers are paying more income tax since his government took office, $800 more. Now he wants to stack on top of those tax in...”

Mr. Pierre Paul-Hus (Charlesbourg—Haute-Saint-Charles, CPC)

June 7th
Hansard Link

Government Orders

“...ter's former national security adviser. Mr. Fadden said that Bill C-59 was “beginning to rival the Income Tax Act for complexity. There are sub-sub-subsections that are excluded, that are exempted. If there is anything the committee can do to make it a bit more straightforward”, it would help. Mr. Fadden said that to the committee. If anyone knows security, it is Canada's former national security adviser. He said that he could not understand Bill C-59 at all and that it was worse than the Income Tax Act. That is what he told the committee. We agreed and tried to help, but to no avail. It...”

Hon. Ed Fast (Abbotsford, CPC)

June 7th
Hansard Link

Government Orders

“...curity adviser, Richard Fadden. Here is what he said about Bill C-59: “It is beginning to rival the Income Tax Act for complexity.” Canadians know how complex that act has become.

He said, “Ther...”

Hon. Pierre Poilievre (Carleton, CPC)

June 7th
Hansard Link

Oral Questions

“... our approach on taxes, which was to put more money in the pockets, particularly of low- and middle-income taxpayers. Can she tell us today how much her carbon tax will cost the average Canadian famil...”

Mr. Arnold Viersen (Peace River—Westlock, CPC)

June 1st
Hansard Link

Private Members' Business

“...akes, but as someone who has worked in the field before, I imagine that he pays probably $12,000 in income tax every year, and probably about $7,000 to $10,000 of that is federal income tax.

We can see how many mechanics it would take to pay those kinds of numbers, when we...”

Hon. Catherine McKenna

May 31st
Hansard Link

Government Orders

“...d accessible benefit that will put more money in the pockets of low-income workers than the working income tax benefit it replaces.

We are strengthening the Canada child benefit. I have heard fr...”

Mr. Terry Duguid (Parliamentary Secretary for Status of Women, Lib.)

May 31st
Hansard Link

Government Orders

“...t January, to 9%.

By this time next year, the combined federal-provincial-territorial average income tax rate for small business will be 12.2%, the lowest in the G7 and the third lowest among me...”

Mrs. Rosemarie Falk (Battlefords—Lloydminster, CPC)

May 31st
Hansard Link

Government Orders

“...eased costs due to the carbon tax. This is in addition to the increased CPP and EI premiums, higher income taxes for entrepreneurs, and punitive changes to the small business tax rate. While we consid...”

Hon. Ed Fast (Abbotsford, CPC)

May 31st
Hansard Link

Government Orders

“...overnment collected the tax and then returned it to taxpayers in the form of corporate and personal income tax reductions. (1325)

We recently had an election in B.C., and the NDP formed governm...”

Hon. Pierre Poilievre (Carleton, CPC)

May 30th
Hansard Link

Routine Proceedings

“...and they will know exactly what it cost them. At tax time, they can calculate what they will pay in income tax. Those taxes are visible, and calculable, to the folks who are paying them.

A carbo...”

Mr. Martin Shields (Bow River, CPC)

May 11th
Hansard Link

Government Orders

“... It is a long list that they could be using, including a residential lease; a mortgage contract; an income tax assessment; a property tax assessment; a vehicle ownership; an insurance certificate; cor...”

Mr. John Nater (Perth—Wellington, CPC)

May 10th
Hansard Link

Government Orders

“...ptable form of ID.

One could use a personal cheque, a government statement of benefits, or an income tax assessment. All Canadians are required to file their taxes every year. April 30 was just ...”

Hon. Pierre Poilievre (Carleton, CPC)

May 8th
Hansard Link

Business of Supply

“...overnment is raising the cost of living. Eighty percent of middle-class Canadians are paying higher income tax today than when the Prime Minister took office. That number will rise to 92% of middle-class Canadians, and their average cost within the next three years will be over $2,000 in new payroll taxes, new income taxes, and other taxes. That is according to the prestigious Fraser Institute, which has cond...”

Mr. Tom Kmiec (Calgary Shepard, CPC)

May 8th
Hansard Link

Business of Supply

“...It actually lowered taxes for every single MP in the House, who got the full benefit of that middle-income tax cut. It is like the government does not even know how the tax system works when it makes that claim.

Yesterday I had the privilege of sitting down with students and young people from CJPAC. We had an exchange of ideas and talked about issues of the day in politics. At every single table I went to, they expressed skepticism about the carbon tax. They expressed skepticism about what the government is doing because they recognize it. One young man told me what he thinks about the carbon tax. He said it would be like going to a dealership, picking out a car with his parents, purchasing a vehicle without knowing the price, and being told they will only know the price when they roll it off the lot. That is the only time they will know what the price is. That is how young people feel about the carbon tax.

The other side will say that it is nothing of the sort and that people like the carbon tax because they like doing something for the environment. People do, but this is not the only thing that they can do. There is an entire array of options. The previous Conservative government took advantage of them. Through regulation, it sought to reduce GHG emissions, and we know that GHG emissions went down. They went down.

We know that families are paying more at the pump. They are paying more to heat their homes. They are paying more for basic products.

Transportation has gone up. When we go to the grocery store today, we pay more for our vegetables, fruits, and meats. I notice that. I go to the Superstore in my riding and meet constituents, and everybody is saying that. The number one thing people email me about nowadays is the cost of living and how expensive it has become.

I always tell them I would like to be able to help them and that I would like to be able to tell them how much, on average, it will cost families, but I cannot even tell them that because the government is covering it up. It is covering up the true cost of the carbon tax on the average family.

It is interesting that every single other government program and initiative is costed out. Projections are usually provided on the estimated impacts. We know that the finance department has done this, but those documents have been redacted so that Canadians and Parliament have no way of knowing.

Before the House now is a piece of legislation asking us to approve a rebate program. How can we approve a rebate program when we do not even know the average cost to Canadians? How can we approve a rebate program when we do not even know how much it would cost the average family, those with kids, those without kids, those with higher incomes, those with lower incomes? The government will not give us that information, and as a result Parliament is not able to make a judicious, intelligent decision on it. It wants that information only for itself and not the rest of Canadians.

I have asked Order Paper question 834 many times now. I have also made access to information requests on the Alberta carbon tax rebate. It is a rebate program in Alberta that is actually operated by the Canada Revenue Agency. It would provide more detailed information on the true impact on Albertans, and the government still will not release it to me. It still will not provide me with that information. Finance officials at the finance department are completely unable to answer the simplest of questions: how much will lower-income Canadians pay? (1030)

I have moved a motion at committee to compel that information to be produced, so that during the discussions on the budget implementation act we would know the true impact on Canadians, on cost of living increases, and on affordability, so that we can make a judicious decision on whether or not this will work. However, we cannot even do that.

They say that stubbornness is the greatest ill. It is a Yiddish proverb, but it applies. For the life of me, I cannot understand why the government does not want to release the information. I have heard the argument that it is an old memo and we do not need that information now. If it is old, great, but release it and give it to us. If the information is old and that is why the Liberals do not want to release it, then they should update the information and make it public. They made a document public on Monday last week that has been roundly panned in the media. It is basically a showpiece, a sell job by Environment Canada, to try to make the case for their carbon tax, and it is the only thing they are doing on their side.

We saw that Australia abandoned a carbon tax after two years of trying to impose it on Australians. Australians revolted. They said no, the cost of living has gone up too high, it is unaffordable, and this is not the way to do it. That is where we are today.

When I travel the country with the finance committee, and when I speak to Albertans in my riding, I can see that people are fed up with paying more just for the basics of living. They are not asking to buy a highly rated Tesla and have it subsidized by a provincial government. They just want to buy the minivan, the basics, so they can take their kids to a soccer or hockey game.

In my riding, we have the Erin Woods arena. The moment the carbon tax was introduced, the arena started paying more. Articles started appearing in the Calgary Herald, saying how much more arenas were paying for heating and to keep the ice cold. They are not getting a rebate. The people who are paying more are the kids, through their registration fees. It is their parents and the dads playing a pickup game on the weekend who are paying more. They do not get a rebate. This is not revenue neutral. The government gains revenue. This scheme has been exposed in British Columbia; the carbon tax there is not revenue neutral. There was a full-on admission that it is not.

A line we often hear on the government side is that over 80% of Canadians already pay a carbon tax. Let us wait until June in Ontario. Let us wait until May 2019 in Alberta. How will that argument hold up then, when the residents of those provinces revolt against the endless increases in the cost of living imposed by the federal government and by bad provincial governments? That is what is coming.

As I mentioned, the cost of living is going up. This is not just because of the carbon tax, but it is one of the big drivers. The minimum wage increases, payroll increases, and income tax increases on companies all matter, and they all have an impact. It is the aggregate, cumu...”

Mr. Tom Kmiec

May 8th
Hansard Link

Business of Supply

“...rnment setting a price. This is a tax imposed by the government.

It is like claiming that the income tax taken from my wages and from those of my constituents works on a market-price system. Thi...”

Mr. Jonathan Wilkinson (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Environment and Climate Change, Lib.)

May 8th
Hansard Link

Business of Supply

“...he member for Wellington—Halton Hills said, “We have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to both lower income taxes and clean up our environment through the pricing of carbon.”

Last week, Environme...”

Mr. Garnett Genuis

May 8th
Hansard Link

Business of Supply

“...those who needed them the most. We brought in the biggest personal exemption. We lowered the lowest income tax bracket. Unlike the Liberals who touched the middle tax bracket, we lowered the lowest income tax bracket. We lowered the GST. We provided all sorts of supports to people, through tax cut...”

Mr. Francesco Sorbara (Vaughan—Woodbridge, Lib.)

May 8th
Hansard Link

Business of Supply

“...r next January to 9%. By this time next year, the combined federal, provincial, territorial average income tax rate for small business will be 12.2%, the lowest in the G7 and the third lowest among members of the OECD. This means that enterprises in my riding will see up to $7,500 in lower federal corporate income tax per year. This will help Canadian entrepreneurs and innovators do what they do best, which is create jobs. I note that 600,000 of them have been created over the last two and a half years. That is good news for Canadian businesses and great news for the hard-working people in my riding of Vaughan--Woodbridge and across this country.

There is more work to be done. That is why in budget 2018, we proposed the Canada workers benefit, a strengthened version of the working income tax benefit, something I long advocated for before I became a candidate for the Liberal Party...”

Mr. Dan Albas (Central Okanagan—Similkameen—Nicola, CPC)

May 8th
Hansard Link

Business of Supply

“... rates. Indeed, for much of the last decade, B.C. has, as a result, had some of the lowest personal income tax rates in most income brackets in Canada. However, that was then and this is now, because ...”

Hon. Pierre Poilievre (Carleton, CPC)

May 7th
Hansard Link

Oral Questions

“...anaged to break both of those promises with the carbon tax cover-up. Not only has he already raised income taxes on 80% of middle-class Canadians, he now wants to charge them a carbon tax and cover up...”

Ms. Kamal Khera (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Revenue, Lib.)

May 4th
Hansard Link

Oral Questions

“...ific cases.

The rules surrounding what is considered a hobby or a business are defined in the Income Tax Act, the test for which was defined by the Supreme Court in 2002. We are committed to wor...”

Mr. Joël Lightbound (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance, Lib.)

May 1st
Hansard Link

Business of Supply

“... shown. I remind members of the Canada workers benefit, which is an improved version of the working income tax benefit. With this benefit, low-income workers will have more money in their pockets and ...”

Mr. Robert Sopuck (Dauphin—Swan River—Neepawa, CPC)

May 1st
Hansard Link

Business of Supply

“...e revenue from a carbon price to reduce the most growth retarding tax we have, which is a corporate income tax.”

Thirty-five billion dollars per year is the upper estimate, so it would be betwee...”

Ms. Kamal Khera (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Revenue, Lib.)

April 27th
Hansard Link

Oral Questions

“...anadians receive the benefits and credits to which they are entitled.

The community volunteer income tax program is an important way for volunteers to help people in their communities access ben...”

Hon. Bill Morneau

April 23rd
Hansard Link

Government Orders

“...at is why we also introduced the Canada workers benefit. We took what was there before, the working income tax benefit, and improved it and added funds to it, so that there would be more of an incenti...”

Mr. Colin Fraser (West Nova, Lib.)

April 23rd
Hansard Link

Government Orders

“...erous and accessible benefit that will put more money in the pockets of low-income workers than the income tax benefit it replaces. For example, a worker making $15,000 a year will get about $500 more...”

Hon. Judy A. Sgro

April 19th
Hansard Link

Government Orders

“...dropout programs.

Another part of that is investing money to make sure that people file their income tax at the end of every year. A quite remarkable number of people do not file their income taxes because they feel they do not have any income; they then miss out on a variety of diffe...”

Ms. Julie Dzerowicz

April 19th
Hansard Link

Government Orders

“...ians to prosper and succeed moving forward. We are strengthening Canadians and have actually reduce income taxes, which was one of our first acts in government.

We are trying to do everything we...”

Mr. Tom Kmiec (Calgary Shepard, CPC)

April 19th
Hansard Link

Government Orders

“Madam Speaker, I listened intently to the member's pontification. He mentioned the middle-income tax cut, which did nothing of the sort. The people who got the biggest tax cut were members o...”

Ms. Kamal Khera (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Revenue, Lib.)

April 18th
Hansard Link

Government Orders

“...for a full-time job as a research analyst. Imani did not know that she was eligible for the working income tax benefit last tax season, so she did not claim it. To give Canadians like Imani a real chance at success, our government will replace the working income tax benefit with a new and improved Canada workers benefit for up to $2,335. The Canada worke...”

Mr. Sean Fraser (Central Nova, Lib.)

April 18th
Hansard Link

Government Orders

“...ke the Canada workers benefit. This benefit is more generous and replaces the very valuable working income tax benefit. It is kind of complicated to understand for a lot of people who do not dig into ...”

Hon. Pierre Poilievre (Carleton, CPC)

April 16th
Hansard Link

Private Members' Business

“...mediately loses $300. It is like a tax rate of 100%, and that does not include other taxes, such as income taxes, payroll taxes, and gas taxes to drive to work, or clawbacks of non-cash benefits such ...”

Mr. Stéphane Lauzon (Parliamentary Secretary for Sport and Persons with Disabilities, Lib.)

April 16th
Hansard Link

Private Members' Business

“...18 introduces the new Canada workers benefit, for example. This measure, which replaces the working income tax benefit, will help low-income workers keep more of their income. With this benefit, the government is also proposing an increase in the disability supplement in order to provide more assistance to Canadians who wish to enter the labour face and face financial barriers because of their disability. The Canada workers benefit will help lift approximately 70,000 Canadians out of poverty by 2020. It will encourage more people to join the workforce.[English]

Whether this extra money is used for things such as helping to cover the family grocery bills or buying warm clothes for the winter, the improved benefits will help low-income working Canadians to make ends meet.

Furthermore, starting in 2019, the government will also make it easier for people to access the benefits they have earned by making changes that will allow the Canada Revenue Agency to calculate the Canada workers benefit for any tax filer who has not claimed it. Allowing the Canada Revenue Agency to automatically provide the benefit to eligible filers will be especially helpful for people with reduced mobility, people who live far from service locations, and people who do not have internet access. As a result, everyone who can benefit from the Canada workers benefit will receive it when they file their taxes, and an estimated 300,000 additional low-income workers will receive the new Canada workers benefit for the 2019 tax year because of these changes. Combined with previous enhancements, our government is investing almost $1 billion in new funding per year to help low-income workers get ahead.

In addition to the new Canada workers benefit, the federal government has provided the refundable medical expense supplement to improve work incentives for Canadians with disabilities. This supplement helps to offset the loss of coverage for medical and disability-related expenses when individuals move from social assistance to the paid labour force.

The intention of ensuring that a financial work incentive exists for Canadians with disabilities is strongly supported. That is why the government is taking action to achieve improvements in labour market outcomes for persons with disabilities. However, while it is obviously desirable to ensure that social assistance programs preserve an incentive to work, the provision of social assistance for the working age populations, including for persons with disabilities, is primarily a provincial and territorial area of responsibility. Of course, the federal government has an interest in ensuring that its policies preserve work incentives and has collaborated with the provinces in this area. In recognition of the important role played by provinces and territories in providing basic income support, our government has worked with them to make province-specific changes to the design of the working income tax benefit to better harmonize with their own programs. Quebec, Alberta, British Columbia, a...”

Mr. Guy Caron (Rimouski-Neigette—Témiscouata—Les Basques, NDP)

April 16th
Hansard Link

Private Members' Business

“...nd the loss of benefits, then Finance Canada would have to modify or amend in some form the working income tax disability supplement. The same would be asked of the provinces through that modification...”

Mr. Dan Albas (Central Okanagan—Similkameen—Nicola, CPC)

April 16th
Hansard Link

Private Members' Business

“...o make Canada a less attractive location for new doctors. Recent tax changes, including to personal income tax rates, will result in many doctors having a reduced net take-home pay. That is not helpfu...”

Mr. Joël Lightbound (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance, Lib.)

April 16th
Hansard Link

Government Orders

“... why budget 2018 introduced the new Canada workers benefit, the CWB. Building on the former working income tax benefit, the CWB would put more money into the pockets of low-income workers. The CWB would encourage more people to join and remain in the workforce by letting them take home more money while they work.

Through Bill C-74, the government would increase the overall support provided by the CWB for the 2019 and subsequent taxation years. In particular, the government proposes to increase maximum benefits under the CWB by up to $170 in 2019, and increase the income level at which the benefit is entirely phased out. As a result, low-income workers earning $15,000 could receive up to almost $500 from the CWB in 2019 than they could receive this year under the current working income tax benefit. That is $500 to invest in the things that are important to them, and to make ends meet.

The government would also propose changes to improve access to the CWB to allow the Canada Revenue Agency to calculate the CWB for anyone who has not claimed it starting in 2019.

Due to these enhancements and intended actions to improve take-up in 2019, the government estimates that more than two million working Canadians would benefit, many of whom were not benefiting from the working income tax benefit. This would help lift approximately 70,000 Canadians out of poverty.

With r...”

Mr. Joël Lightbound

April 16th
Hansard Link

Government Orders

“...ountry. We did not wait when it came to increasing the Canada workers benefit, formerly the working income tax benefit, by almost 165%, a move that will lift tens of thousands of low-income Canadians ...”

Mrs. Celina Caesar-Chavannes (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of International Development, Lib.)

April 16th
Hansard Link

Government Orders

“...ing the small business tax rate, we have indexed the CCB, and we have introduced the Canada working income tax benefit.

One of the things that people were questioning and a bit concerned about i...”

Hon. Pierre Poilievre (Carleton, CPC)

April 16th
Hansard Link

Government Orders

“...eople might pay more for gas, groceries, electricity, and other basic essentials, they would get an income tax break or perhaps a consumption tax break. As a result, it would be a strictly neutral tra...”

Mr. Peter Julian (New Westminster—Burnaby, NDP)

April 16th
Hansard Link

Government Orders

“...As members know, the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives has now estimated the real marginal income tax rate for Canada's biggest corporations at less than 10%. It is at 9.8% on average. There ...”


The Senate

Hon. Scott Tannas

October 4th
Hansard Link

Federal Public Sector Labour Relations Act Bill to Amend—Second Reading—Debate Continued

“...den on the employer to resolve without the bargaining agent. In addition, Bill C-62 would amend the Income Tax Act to remove the requirement that labour organizations and labour trusts provide specifi...”

Hon. Percy Mockler

October 3rd
Hansard Link

Canada Revenue Agency Act Bill to Amend—Thirty-third Report of National Finance Committee Presented

“...o which was referred Bill S-243, An Act to amend the Canada Revenue Agency Act (reporting on unpaid income tax), has, in obedience to the order of reference of June 5, 2018, examined the said bill and...”

Senator Martin

September 26th
Hansard Link

Customs Act Second Reading—Debate Adjourned

“...on in any way poses a risk that Canadians wintering in the United States may become subject to U.S. income tax and more scrutiny as a result of information shared. Would you address that concern?”

Senator Coyle

September 26th
Hansard Link

Customs Act Second Reading—Debate Adjourned

“The question is whether they would be subject to U.S. income tax?”

Senator Martin

September 26th
Hansard Link

Customs Act Second Reading—Debate Adjourned

“I guess the risk of being subject to income tax with information about their travel. Some of the snowbirds or Canadians who may spend tim...”

Mr. Giroux

June 20th
Hansard Link

Parliamentary Budget Officer Yves Giroux Received in Committee of the Whole

“...t was very granular, and in the opinion of the agency, it would have contravened section 241 of the Income Tax Act, which prevents the disclosure of information that could identify a taxpayer, directl...”

Mr. Giroux

June 20th
Hansard Link

Parliamentary Budget Officer Yves Giroux Received in Committee of the Whole

“...initial request was 3,000 income ranges. So if you take all of the individuals who file zero dollar income tax returns, in a small jurisdiction — and you can think about any of the Atlantic provinces ...”

Hon. Grant Mitchell

June 11th
Hansard Link

Budget Implementation Bill, 2018, No. 1 Second Reading—Debate Adjourned

“... increased. To build on these enhancements in the BIA 2, the CRA will be mandated to screen for low-income tax filers who may not be aware of the benefit and, therefore, will have failed to claim it. So low-income workers will take home more money and will have stronger incentives to join and remain in the workforce. This program will help 2 million Canadians, and 300,000 low-income workers who have not applied for the benefit before will be identified and helped to apply in the future. Turning to Employment Insurance Enhancement, all of this will be supplemented by provisions in the bill to make permanent the Working While on Claim program. This program allows EI claimants to keep 50 cents of their weekly EI benefits for every dollar earned from working while on claim, up to a maximum of 90 per cent of their weekly insurable earnings. Until 2021, claimants can choose to revert to a previous program to ensure a smooth transition to this new one. Canadians on EI will, therefore, have an incentive to find work, even if it is part time, while not being discouraged from doing so by a precipitous drop in EI benefits. On the subject of strengthening the Canada Pension Plan, CPP benefits will be enhanced in following ways: The accrual of CPP benefits will be sustained for parents who decide to stay home for a period of time after the birth or adoption of their children. Those who take this important time away from work outside the home will, as a result, not have to meet their retirements with a hole in their CPP pensions. The bill provides the same pension accrual continuity for people with disabilities. It provides a benefit to disabled retirement pension beneficiaries under the age of 65; and it enhances CPP survivor benefits. These improvements will be offered at no increase in premiums. I shall speak now to support for veterans and their families. Since 2006, 67,000 veterans have received what is called the Lump Sum Disability Award. For some of the severely injured, a lump sum, now at $365,000, can be challenging to manage. Veterans benefits have been highly complex, inflexible and administratively burdensome. The current funding model, therefore, has been questioned by the military, family of veterans and veterans themselves. Bill C-74, with this in mind, restructures veterans’ compensation in three ways, which define what is now going to be called the Pension for Life program. It creates a lifetime monthly pain and suffering pension and an additional monthly pain-and-suffering pension that, together, can be as much as $2,650 per month tax-free. This will be an alternative to the lump sum, which will still be available. It creates the Income Replacement Benefit, which consolidates, for greater simplicity, six of seven existing benefits. This benefit will be 90 per cent of pre-release salary, indexed annually for inflation, and will be increased in addition annually, in recognition of lost career progression. The bill will increase the survivor’s benefit from 50 per cent to 70 per cent of the income replacement pension. These provisions reflect a determined effort to respond to concerns about the structure of veterans’ benefits making them more easily understood, less complicated, more flexible and more accessible, with less administrative burden. These provisions also represent an increase, overall, in funding for veterans of $3.6 billion. In addition, the bill will enhance support for military personnel, police officers and other first responders on deployment abroad. They will receive enhanced tax relief. Members of the Canadian Armed Forces and police officers and other first responders who are deployed internationally on operational missions, regardless of the risk level, will be able to claim a deduction against their taxable income now up to the pay level of a lieutenant-colonel, which amounts to a deduction of as much as $132,000. Currently, the deduction is limited to a non-commissioned officer’s pay level, which is somewhat lower. There will also be support for families of first responders. The Memorial Grant Program for First Responders is a $300,000 grant for families of first responders who have died in the line of duty. Bill C-74 will make it tax-free. The second broad category of measures in this bill focuses on economic growth. These measures will have a stimulative impact on Canada’s economy. First, cutting taxes for small business. This is exciting. We all know that small businesses are a key driver of Canada’s economy. They account for 70 per cent of our private sector jobs. The small business tax rate has already been cut to 10 per cent. This legislation will implement a further cut to 9 per cent, effective January 2019. By this time next year, the combined federal-provincial-territorial average income tax rate for Canadian small businesses will be 12.2 per cent, the lowest in the G-7 and the third-lowest amongst members of the OECD. The second initiative that will have implications for economic stimulation is remediation agreements. Bill C-74 provides for remediation agreements between an organization accused of committing an offence and a prosecutor to stay a court proceeding if the organization complies with certain conditions. These agreements will be supervised by a judge. Remediation agreements mitigate the uncertainty and other business-damaging consequences that arise if a company is charged criminally. They can provide quicker reparations to victims, encourage voluntary disclosure of wrongdoing and stimulate changes in corporate culture while — and this is important — saving jobs. These agreements will allow companies to continue operating when they might otherwise fail, thereby protecting employees, investors, and contractors who were not involved in the wrongdoing. Remediation agreements can save jobs, investment and a company’s contribution to our economy, while not precluding culpable individuals within the organization from being prosecuted criminally. If the conditions are not met, the prosecutor can revert to traditional court proceedings at any time. One of the best-known features of this bill, of course, is its creation of the Greenhouse Gas Pollution Pricing Act, which puts a price on greenhouse gas emissions across the country. Science tells us that climate change is a serious threat and that human activity is causing it. Some argue that dealing with climate change would be damaging to our economy. I believe that ignoring the threat of climate change, or taking action inadequate to the challenge of dealing with it, is a far greater risk. On the other hand, dealing with climate change will stimulate, motivate and inspire a new 21st-century economy. It will be a catalyst for an economy of the future. It is this appreciation of threat and opportunity that drives Canada’s commitment to the Paris Agreement; inspires our commitment to lower emissions by 232 megatonnes of greenhouse gas emissions, by 2030; and drives the decision to implement a carbon price to do it. Economists tell us that the most efficient and effective way to make significant emissions reductions is by putting a price on carbon. The federal government worked with provincial, territorial and Indigenous partners to adopt the Pan-Canadian Framework on Clean Growth and Climate Change in December 2016. The framework aims to have carbon pricing in place in all provinces and territories this year. Provinces and territories can implement their own system, or they can default to the federal backstop system. The federal backstop system will have two features: a carbon price on fossil fuels and an output-based system for larger emitters, designed in particular to help emitters with trade exposure. (1840) If a jurisdiction chooses not to set up a system of its own, and most are choosing to do so, the backstop system created by this act will be applied. In either case, the money will stay in the province or territory where it is raised. It is interesting to note several observations about how this will affect our economy. First, 80 per cent of Canadians already live in jurisdictions that have carbon pricing: British Columbia, Alberta, Ontario and Quebec. Interestingly, and importantly, these were the four fastest-growing economies in the country in 2017. More than 70 per cent of farms in this country are in these four provinces. Most provinces and territories, as I said, will implement their own pricing systems and not opt for the backstop default. Environment and Climate Change Canada’s most recent models show that the difference in GDP growth by 2022 due to this program would amount to about $2 billion, or 0.1 per cent of a $2 trillion GDP. The Parliamentary Budget Officer’s revised analysis, published on May 22, 2018, says it is broadly in line with the ECCC’s analysis from 2016. Specific forecasts of the cost to households of this program depend greatly on how provinces and territories choose to recycle carbon pricing revenues. Alberta’s experience, however, is instructive. That province’s carbon levy is estimated to cost a couple with two children $508 in 2018; however, families receiving the full rebate under the Alberta program will receive $540 in return, so would actually have a net benefit. For farmers, the government has specified two exemptions from carbon pricing for anywhere the federal backstop is implemented: First, non-combustion emissions such as those from cattle, tillage and fertilizer applications will be exempted; and second, gasoline and diesel fuels for on-farm use will be exempted. Our Agriculture Committee has raised two concerns. The first is with the definition of farming. To address this, Senator Harder has just tabled a Senate delayed answer today in which the government has clarified that the definition used in the greenhouse gas pollution pricing act is the same as that applied in the Income Tax Act, and thus the CRA interpretation to which witnesses referred will be the same in prac...”

Hon. Claude Carignan

June 5th
Hansard Link

Cannabis Bill Motion in Amendment

“...oration as defined in paragraph (a) of the definition public corporation in subsection 89(1) of the Income Tax Act, the shareholders of the organization or parent corporation that hold more than 5% of...”

Hon. Tony Dean

June 5th
Hansard Link

Cannabis Bill Motion in Amendment

“...exactly the same way as other companies, and that includes that public companies are required under income tax to report when shareholders own more than 10 per cent of shares. That must be disclosed. That’s not as tight as the 5 per cent mentioned in the motion, but it’s pretty rigid. I’m reminding us that we’ve learned from other jurisdictions. We’ve rested on current compliance laws, income tax and disclosure laws, and the government has put in place a rigorous security testing and ...”

Hon. Dennis Dawson

June 5th
Hansard Link

Ministry of Canadian Heritage Broadcasting Tax Policy

“...for a report to be released and then for a bill to be introduced. In the meantime, we know that the Income Tax Act contains a loophole that, as my colleague, the Honourable Senator Joyal, said, allows...”

Hon. Marilou McPhedran

June 5th
Hansard Link

Canada Revenue Agency Act Bill to Amend--Second Reading

“...he second reading of Bill S-243, An Act to amend the Canada Revenue Agency Act (reporting on unpaid income tax). I’ll use CRA and ARC as acronyms for the agency in this statement. [Translation] I would like to thank Senator Downe for introducing this bill and for working hard to ensure the CRA is accountable to the citizens it serves. Prior statements by Senators Downe, Bovey, McIntyre, and Galvez all pointed to the CRA’s lacklustre public accountability performance. Good governance requires transparency. Without transparency, there can be no meaningful accountability. [English] This is an important bill. Tax evasions, while often invisible to most of us, nevertheless impact human rights and the welfare of citizens. We are reminded by former UN independent expert on the promotion of a democratic and equitable international order, Mr. Alfred de Zayas, that: Corruption, bribery, tax fraud and tax evasion have such grave effects on human dignity, human rights and human welfare that they shock the conscience of mankind. They should be prosecuted nationally and internationally. This bill will promote transparency and accountability so that we may move forward and strengthen good governance. Though this bill is important in the context of exposing tax evasion and tax gaps, it also is a step forward in holding the CRA accountable if and when the CRA applies its considerable power over Canadians in ways that have punitive impact that are out of proportion, even if unintended. It is reasonable for the CRA to demand proof of payment by way of invoices and receipts that taxpayers are required to keep for six years. The Income Tax Act also allows the CRA to audit, review or seize items without a court order. This inclu...”

Hon. Diane F. Griffin

June 4th
Hansard Link

Budget Implementation Bill, 2018, No. 1 Twelfth Report of Agriculture and Forestry Committee on Subject Matter—Debate Concluded

“...that the definition of “farming” in the Greenhouse Gas Pollution Pricing Act is consistent with the Income Tax Act and also the Canada Revenue Agency’s ordinary definition of “farming activities.” Sen...”

Senator Griffin

June 4th
Hansard Link

Budget Implementation Bill, 2018, No. 1 Twelfth Report of Agriculture and Forestry Committee on Subject Matter—Debate Concluded

“...that the definition of “farming” in the Greenhouse Gas Pollution Pricing Act is consistent with the Income Tax Act and also the Canada Revenue Agency’s ordinary definition of “farming activities.” We heard this again and again in our committee. For instance, Mr. Chris van den Heuvel, Past President of the Nova Scotia Federation of Agriculture, told us: The definition of a farmer used within the draft legislation is seen as overly simplistic and could inadvertently disqualify legitimate farmers from receiving carbon price exemption charges on farm fuels. In reading the proposed definition, it would seem to exclude agricultural activities such as Christmas tree farming, greenhouses, maple syrup [production, aquaculture] and others. Although the legislative definition is the same for the Income Tax Act and Bill C-74, the Canada Revenue Agency issues interpretation guidelines that expand...”

Hon. Rosa Galvez

May 29th
Hansard Link

Canada Revenue Agency Act Bill to Amend—Second Reading—Debate Continued

“...ing old wells. The CRA alleges that the Shanghai-born financier evaded paying more than $860,000 in income tax and GST on the nearly $2.7 million in income he pocketed from brokering one of the bigges...”

Hon. Ratna Omidvar

May 24th
Hansard Link

Team Everest

“...hem to hockey. When the time was right, drivers’ lessons and licences were taken care of. The first income tax return was filed, and with the very careful shepherding of the finances under Vinay’s car...”

Hon. Peter Harder (Government Representative in the Senate)

May 9th
Hansard Link

National Revenue Income Splitting

“...s are that where work is done, it is recognized in the income splitting that is afforded a personal income tax statement.”


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