Tax Increases, Property Sales Proposed to Balance Budget

Yesterday Minister Mike De Jong tabled Budget 2013, announcing a shift from a deficit to a surplus position in 2013-2014. In order to attain balance, Budget 2013 will increase the general corporate income tax and the personal income tax for high earners. The budget also includes a plan for the scheduled sale of 100 government properties to generate an estimated $800 million in revenue.

Budget 2013 also relies on continued economic growth, with forecasts of economic growth of 1.6%, 2.2% and 2.5% over the next three years, as well as continuing spending discipline within provincial ministries and service delivery agencies. The total provincial debt is projected to increase from $62.7 billion this financial year to $69.4 billion in 2015-16.

Ministry of Community, Sport and Cultural Development

The 2013-14 budget for the Local Government Section of the Ministry of Community Sport and Cultural Development is $103,715 as compared to $249,865 in 2012-13. UBCM would note that the change results from the following:

· a previously announced acceleration of funding last year for the Strategic Community Investment Funds, which is comprised of Traffic Fine Revenues, Small Community and Regional District grant funding;

· acceleration of funding for the Peace River Fair Share in 2012-13; and

· maturity of funding dedicated to past infrastructure programs.

Further Details of Interest to Local Government

Taxation:

· the general corporate income tax rate to will increase to 11% from the current 10%, effective April 1, 2013;

· the personal income tax rate for income over $150,000 will increase by 2.1% for a two year period, effective January 1, 2014; and

· a phasing out of the school property tax credits for light industry (class five) for the 2013 tax year.

Community Safety

· an additional $52 million over the next three years to fund increased RCMP policing costs including salary and benefit increases under the new contract.

Education

· a new BC Training and Education Savings Grant that provides a one-time $1,200 grant towards a BC resident child's Registered Education Savings Plan for children born on or after January 1, 2007

Agriculture

· an additional $20 million over three years for a carbon tax relief program to help offset carbon tax costs for commercial greenhouse vegetable and flower growers - the grant will be set at 80% of the carbon tax paid on specified fuels

· carbon tax exemption for farmers on the purchase of coloured motor fuel for use in on-farm equipment and fuel used on-highway in eligible farm vehicles

· an additional $4 million over three years to support the Agricultural Land Commission for increased oversight of the Agricultural Land Reserve

Housing

· $13 million over three years to support the renewal and renovation of thirteen (13) provincially owned Single Room Occupancy (SRO) hotels in Vancouver's Downtown Eastside

Meta Navigation