Balanced Budget Delivered! By Costas Menegakis, MP
Under the leadership of Prime Minister Stephen Harper, Canada has weathered the global economic storm by creating over 1.2 million net new jobs and delivering a balanced budget. Our federal tax burden is at its lowest level in fifty years and Canada leads the G7 in public investment growth.
However, we live in uncertain times and the global economy remains fragile. That’s why I’m pleased to report that Economic Action Plan 2015 will continue our Government’s focus on creating jobs and economic growth in the GTA and across the country. Our plan includes new tax relief for families and small business, investments in infrastructure, research and innovation, and help for our most vulnerable. Here are some of the ways Economic Action Plan 2015 helps:
Support Small Business by reducing the small business tax rate, improving access to financing, and providing support for young entrepreneurs.
Support Families by increasing and expanding the Universal Child Care Benefit, introducing the Family Tax Cut, increasing the child care expense deduction, protecting consumers and limiting taxpayer exposure in the financial sector.
Support Manufacturers through an accelerated capital cost allowance for a 10-year period to boost productivity-enhancing investment, and the creation of a new $100 million Automotive Supplier Innovation Program.
Support Veterans by improving the ratio of veterans to case managers, creating a new tax-free Family Caregiver Relief Benefit, introducing a new Retirement Income Security Benefit, and enhancing benefits for severely disabled veterans and part-time reserve force veterans.
Support Infrastructure by dedicating a $1 billion new Public Transit Fund, and providing over $5 billion a year nation-wide for infrastructure under the New Building Canada Plan.
Support Charities by exempting donations involving private shares and real estate from capital gains tax.
Support the Vulnerable by supporting affordable housing, further assisting persons with disabilities and increasing economic opportunities for Aboriginal peoples.
Support Seniors by reducing the minimum requirements for Registered Retirement Income Funds, proposing a new, permanent, non-refundable Home Accessibility Tax Credit for seniors and persons with disabilities, and increasing the Tax Free Savings Account annual contribution limit to $10,000.
Expand New Markets with the completion of 38 free trade agreements including the Canada European Union Comprehensive Economic and Canada-Korean Free Trade Agreements. With Canada having preferential access to more than half the world market, we are investing $152 million in trade promotion investments to help businesses expand into these new markets.
Enhance National Security by allocating the resources required to counter violent extremism and terrorism, protect our essential cyber systems and critical infrastructure against cyber-attacks, protect our borders and increase spending on our Canadian Armed Forces by nearly $12 billion.
Protect the Environment by building on our more than $20 billion investment since 2006 to conserve our landscapes, seascapes and species through new funding of nearly $700 million to protect species at risk and conserve our environment.
Celebrate our Heritage by supporting activities and events to celebrate Canada’s 150th anniversary in 2017, with $210 million over four years, starting in 2015–16.
Record-high Federal Transfers to Ontario in the amount of $20.4 billion to support health care, education, and social programs.
Our Government’s balanced budget is securing a stronger economy, delivering results and maintaining Canada’s leadership position on the world stage. We reject the high-tax, high-debt agenda of some, and remain focused on creating jobs while keeping taxes low for all.
Costas Menegakis is the Member of Parliament for Richmond Hill and Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration. He can be reached by phone at 905-770-4440 or through his website at www.costasmenegakis.ca.