• Chamber Urges Feds to Reconsider Planned Tax Hikes for 2023

    The London Chamber of Commerce is calling on the federal government to help alleviate the financial burdens placed on small businesses by rampant inflation and increasing taxes.

    Last year, the Chamber along with other local business organizations wrote a letter to Finance Minister, Chrystia Freeland, urging the federal government to freeze the Alcohol Excise Escalator Tax, which is set to rise by as much as 6.3% this April and represents $130 million in additional taxes on Canada’s alcohol produces, much of which will be passed down to supporting industries like tourism and consumers.

    The letter was followed by the Chamber participating in a delegation representing stakeholders from across the country that went to Ottawa to share their concerns. And although representatives from the Ministry of Finance seemed receptive to the delegation, there has yet to be any action taken on freezing the tax.

    But it isn’t just businesses that deal with alcohol production and sales that will feel the sting of increased taxation in 2023. As of January 1st, payroll taxes have risen as well with CPP premiums going up by 7.3% due to the rise in the CPP rate and the Yearly Maximum Pensionable Earnings (YMPE) and EI premiums for employers increasing by as much as 5.2% per employee.

    Combined, the increased rates of CPP and EI could cost local businesses as much as $325 more per employee. (And Canadian workers will see a drop of up to $305 in their take-home pay unless their employers make up the difference.)

    Also set to come into effect this year (on April 1, no less) is an increase to the federal government’s carbon pricing policy which is expected to bump the carbon price on a litre of gasoline from 11.05 cents to 14.31 cents. And the price of gasoline will be further impacted by new clean fuel regulations which are set to come into effect in July this year.

    While many businesses are still struggling to pay off the loans they needed to keep them afloat during COVID-19, and all businesses are struggling with rising input costs due to inflation, now is not the time to be burdening them with heavier and heavier taxes.

    We urge the federal government to take measures to ensure Canadian businesses can continue to thrive in 2023.