Oakes fires back at NDP double-dipping business tax

VICTORIA (February 22, 2018) Cariboo North MLA Coralee Oakes directed a hard hitting question at the NDP government in the Legislature today concerning their new payroll tax on small business.

In its first provincial budget announced on Tuesday, NDP Finance minister Carole James announced that government plans to shift the costs of health care onto the private sector through its new Employer Health Tax.

“When the plan to eliminate MSP premiums was originally announced by the B.C. Liberals in the 2017 provincial budget, the idea was to provide a $1 billion tax break to individuals,” said Oakes. “Clearly the NDP wants that money back, but now they are asking the business community to foot the bill”

The Finance minister also wouldn’t acknowledge the year of double taxation these businesses will suffer from, as both MSP premiums and the new employer health tax will be collected by the NDP government in 2019.

Oakes made reference to local business owner Lloyd Inwood of Inwood Trucking in her question to Finance minister Carole James:

“The Minister of Finance is double-dipping to raise an extra $1.8 billion on the backs of family business, and that is not funny. My constituent Lloyd Inwood owns Inwood Trucking. He was looking to fill four or five positions in his company, but sent a letter to our office yesterday, and said: “I’m considering walking away from everything my family has built over two generations.”

Oakes also asked the NDP Finance minister if family owned businesses should consider laying off staff or increasing prices to cover the cost of the new payroll tax.