Delta non-profits and charities ask NDP to exempt them from Employer Health Tax

Photography by John Lehmann

DELTA (April 4, 2018) – Four Delta organizations are pleading with the NDP government to exempt non-profits from the Employer Health Tax.

The Delta Gymnastics Society, the Delta Hospital Foundation, the Delta Hospice Society, and British Columbia Guide Dog Services have penned a joint letter to express their opposition to the tax which they say will force them to cut services, raise prices or lay off staff.

Delta South MLA Ian Paton is sympathetic to their concerns, and supports their action. “My colleagues and I have raised numerous examples like this in the Legislature, but the NDP simply aren’t listening. I hope this letter will finally get through to them, so that these groups and the families they serve won’t suffer from this punishing tax.”

In the case of the not-for-profit Delta Gymnastics, the organization currently employs 33 part-time and 17 full-time staff, most of whom live in the City of Delta. Their coaches are all paid, not volunteer, as they are not allowed to deliver services without proper certification. They welcome more than 2,000 children and youth every week, in addition to facilitating activities at local schools.

Executive Director Ana Arciniega says the organization can’t afford the additional $25,419 it expects to fork over in payroll tax, and she will likely be forced to increase fees for families who already struggle to justify sport and physical literacy as an extra-curricular expense. She adds the upcoming minimum wage increase will also have to be absorbed by these families.

She says these factors may put the viability of her organization in jeopardy, and took the time to record a short video with Paton to explain her situation.

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