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Canada Throne speech pledges extended wage subsidy, help for women and taxes

01:11  24 september  2020
01:11  24 september  2020 Source:   globalnews.ca

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Today, the Liberals' throne speech promised to extend the subsidies to summer 2021, acknowledging the economic situation facing many employers is As of August, the country has recouped about two-thirds of those job losses but that recovery has been uneven: Women , youth, low- wage and visible

The speech promised to help get Canadian natural resources to market, but stopped short of making any promises regarding pipelines. The government also promised to make life more affordable by cutting the cost of cellphone and wireless bills by 25%, and increasing the federal minimum wage .

a man and a woman standing in front of a building: Gov. Gen. Julie Payette and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau wait during the throne speech in the Senate chamber in Ottawa on Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2020. © Adrian Wyld/CP Gov. Gen. Julie Payette and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau wait during the throne speech in the Senate chamber in Ottawa on Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2020.

The throne speech promises a slew of measures that would financially affect individual Canadians as the Trudeau government outlines its strategy to set the country on a recovery path from the health and economic consequences of the novel coronavirus pandemic.

The Liberal government unveiled plans to extend the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy through to next summer and a variety of initiatives to help workers and especially women rejoin the workforce, including steps toward a Canada-wide childcare system and funding for skills training.

Liberals vow wage-subsidy extension to 2021, revamp of EI system in throne speech

  Liberals vow wage-subsidy extension to 2021, revamp of EI system in throne speech OTTAWA — The Liberals are reversing course on a decision to wind down a federal wage subsidy, vowing in their throne speech to extend the program for businesses harmed by COVID-19 into next year. Over the summer the government decided to start scaling back the program through the rest of the year by providing a smaller subsidy with each passing month.

You also can't receive the Wage Subsidy Extension more than once for an employee. The 40 day window is to give employers enough time to calculate their revenue loss and engage with their employees before applying for the subsidy .

2:43 Emergency wage subsidy extended until end of August. WATCH: The federal government is extending its -billion Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) to the end of Eligibility is also being expanded to more organizations to include tax -exempt Indigenous-owned corporations or

There are also pledges to create a new federal disability benefit modelled after the Guaranteed Income Supplement (GIS) and more help for first-time homebuyers.

Read more: Liberals unveil $37B for CERB transition to new benefits, EI changes

But the government's pitch to Canadians also includes the possibility of new taxes in the future. The throne speech, read in the Senate by Gov. Gen. Julie Payette, mentions "additional ways to tax extreme wealth inequality, including by concluding work to limit the stock option deduction."

The Conservatives immediately responded by saying they would not support the plan and the Bloc Quebecois said it proposes too many intrusions into provincial jurisdiction, likely leaving the fate of the minority Liberal government in the hands of Jagmeet Singh and the New Democrats.

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You can no longer apply for the Wage Subsidy Extension . If you've already applied, we'll continue to process your application and let you know the outcome.

Our programmes can help you get ready for work with training and work experience. Apprenticeship Support Programme. Get help to retain and bring on new We can help you get your business up and running. Job interviews. Get advice about how to prepare for and deliver a great interview.

The eventual vote on the throne speech is a confidence motion and the Liberals need at least one of the three main opposition parties in the Commons to back their plan.

Wage subsidy extended

The planned extension of the wage subsidy will likely come as a relief to workers currently receiving part of their pay through government funding as well as businesses relying on the aid. Lobby groups representing industries that have been especially hard hit by the pandemic, like the restaurant sector, had asked Ottawa to prolong the support into 2021.

The last claim period for the current wage subsidy, which provides a varying degree of support based on the extent of the revenue loss suffered by eligible businesses, ends on Nov. 21. Existing legislation allows for an additional claim period ending no later than Dec. 31.

The Trudeau government also says it will also expand the Canada Emergency Business Account to help businesses with fixed costs, and improve the Business Credit Availability Program.

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Employers and sole traders could apply for the Wage Subsidy before 10 June 2020. It was to support them if they were impacted by COVID-19 and faced laying off staff or reducing hours.

Your obligations when you receive the Wage Subsidy Extension , and under employment law. if the employees’ (or self-employed person’s) ordinary wages are less than the subsidy , pay them their usual wages (this also applies to self-employed people whose drawings are regularly less than the subsidy

It also promises industry-specific help for vulnerable sectors such as travel and tourism, hospitality and cultural industries like the performing arts.

Read more: ‘Relieved’ — Canadians who have exhausted EI included in post-CERB plan

There is no mention, however, of tweaking the Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance (CECRA) program, which has been widely criticized for leaving it up to landlords to request the aid. Many struggling small-business tenants have reported their landlords would not apply.

The speech is also scant on new details about the federal income support programs that will replace the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) which expires this month.

In August, Ottawa announced broad temporary changes to make Employment Insurance more generous, as well as three new benefits for workers who don't qualify for EI, as well as those with no workplace sickness benefits and parents caring for children who are unable to attend school or daycare.

The throne speech mentions the EI system will be the mechanism for delivering employment benefits, including to those who weren't eligible for EI before the pandemic. Both the EI system and the Canada Revenue Agency have been administering the CERB.

Throne speech: Liberals vow to launch campaign to create one million new jobs, extend wage subsidy until 2021

  Throne speech: Liberals vow to launch campaign to create one million new jobs, extend wage subsidy until 2021 Deputy Leader of the Opposition and Conservative MP Candice Bergen said Wednesday the party is ready for a federal election if the NDP does not support the throne speech, which was delivered on Wednesday by Governor General Julie Payette. Bergen said that the prime minister should have presented a throne speech that addressed concerns of the Opposition, the provinces and “every day Canadians.”

The wage subsidy is considered excluded income to businesses and are also GST exempt. When passed on as wages , businesses don’t get a deduction for income tax purposes. The wage subsidy can be accessed by labour on-hire and temping agencies for any employees (eg casual, fixed-term

The government introduced the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) to prevent further job losses The government is extending CEWS eligibility to national-level RCAAAs that are tax -exempt under This will allow non-public educational and training institutions to qualify for the wage subsidy .

Childcare, help for women, skills training

The government describes two of its most ambitious, and possibly costliest, initiatives as part of broad plan to get Canadians back to work.

The first is a "significant, long-term, sustained investment" to create a coast-to-coast affordable childcare system that takes inspiration from the Quebec model.

With childcare under provincial jurisdiction, though, it's unclear whether and how Trudeau's vision would provide short-term relief to working parents, and particularly women, who are struggling to juggle the responsibilities of work, homeschool and caring for children at home.

Read more: One-third of working moms mulled quitting their jobs due to COVID-19: survey

The Trudeau government also pledges to make "the largest investment in Canadian history in training for workers," with programs that would prepare Canadians for jobs in growing sectors as well as help connect workers and employers.

As well, Ottawa promises to set up an Action Plan for Women in the Economy to reverse the drop in female workforce participation triggered by the pandemic.

"We have long understood that Canada cannot succeed if half of the population is held back," the speech says.

The Liberals also say they will expand Youth Employment and Skills Strategy to increase paid-work opportunities for young Canadians next year.

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A new benefit for Canadians with disabilities

In a nod to longstanding criticism of Canada's support system for Canadians with disabilities, the throne speech describes plans to rejig key federal disability policies.

The government promises a new federal disability benefit modeled after the GIS, which supplements the income of financially vulnerable seniors. Ottawa also pledges changes to the way it assesses eligibility for other government disability programs and benefits.

Read more: Canadians with lifelong disabilities can lose disability tax credit

Advocates say current rules make it difficult for some Canadians with severe disabilities to access or keep the federal disability tax credit.

Taxes on the wealthy

In a speech that contains few signs of fiscal restraint and no detailed price tags, the Trudeau government also hints at new taxes on the wealthy.

Mentioning long-term plans to strengthen the middle class, the speech pledges to find additional ways to use taxation to reduce "extreme wealth inequality," including targeting the stock option deduction.

Read more: Your CERB money is taxable. Here’s how it’s going to work

Currently, profits derived from employee stock options — a common form of compensation — are taxed at half the rate of personal income.

Under former finance minister Bill Morneau, Ottawa had introduced, then quietly shelved, plans to limit the preferential tax treatment.

Before the pandemic hit, the government said it would include revised plans for taxing stock options in its 2020 federal budget.

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Trudeau is scheduled to address Canadians in a nationally televised speech later Wednesday, a move designed to underscore the ongoing severity of the pandemic, but one his political rivals have argued is a political stunt and lends credence to the idea of the throne speech as the Liberals' platform for the next election.

With files from the Canadian Press


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Alberta premier says federal throne speech stomps into provincial jurisdiction .
Alberta Premier Jason Kenney sees grounds for more constitutional challenges, should the federal Liberal government follow through with promises contained in Wednesday's throne speech. Kenney told reporters Thursday morning that federal government plans jeopardize global investments in Alberta's forestry and fertilizer sectors — moves the premier believes are an infringement on Alberta's right to develop its own natural resources. He called the speech a "full-frontal attack" on federalism. "There were more policies that would invade provincial jurisdiction than I could count," Kenney said.

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