The Saskatchewan government appointed a commission to review business taxes in Saskatchewan earlier in the year. This Business Tax Commission will release its report on Thursday, Nov. 24th.
“We are concerned about what this report will look like,” says Dr. Jim Mulvale, Research Associate with the Saskatchewan office of the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives. “We are worried because the voices of business lobby groups were very vocal during this process while small business, non-governmental organizations and ordinary Saskatchewan people for the most part did not participate in the government process.”
Mulvale, who is also the Head of the Justice Studies Department at the University of Regina says that the message the majority of the groups made to the Government Commission made was that taxes must be lowered for business in order for Saskatchewan’s economy to prosper.
A new report published by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives shows that corporations in Saskatchewan are not unfairly taxed as some people in the business community have protested.
“Our research shows that the level of taxation in Saskatchewan is not far off from the Canadian average,” says Dr. Ian Hudson, who teaches in the Faculty of Economics at the University of Manitoba and is one of the contributors to the new study in taxation in Saskatchewan by the CCPA.
“What’s more, taxpayer-funded public services directly benefit the business community in the province, providing businesses with inexpensive factors of production that make Saskatchewan an incredibly competitive place to do business,” says Hudson.
Mulvale and Hudson say it is not too late for ordinary Saskatchewan citizens to provide their input to the government on these important issues.
“CCPA Saskatchewan is organizing a Citizens’ Budget Commission to collect peoples’ thoughts about taxation in Saskatchewan’s economy and what the fiscal priorities for the Government of Saskatchewan should be.
The Citizens Budget Commission is traveling to seven communities throughout the province in November and will be hearing from groups in Regina on Nov. 24th (the same day the Government report will be released) and again on December 7th.
“Taxes are an integral part of our society. They pay for the infrastructure we rely on, provide for public services such as health care, help redistribute wealth to facilitate a more just society, and fund essentials such as education,” says Mulvale, who will also be Chairing the Citizens Budget Commission.
For further information regarding the Citizens’ Budget Commission or to book a presentation time, please call (306) 924-3372 or 581-4897. Check out our website at www.citizensbudgetcommission.ca