Small businesses head to the polls: CFIB releases analysis of federal party commitments and Leaders’ Survey on small business issues
Toronto, September 16, 2021 – With the federal election less than a week away, the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) has released its Leaders’ Survey of the six major parties, as well as its own analysis of the good and the bad for small businesses in each platform to help business owners make their choice.
“There are positive measures for small businesses in all the party platforms, but there are also things that would keep business owners up at night, especially at this time when they are already very worried about the future,” said CFIB president Dan Kelly. “In fact, more than half (54 per cent) of business owners would not advise someone else to start a business right now, and that should worry every Canadian, not just those who already own a business.”
CFIB surveyed all the major parties on the biggest concerns on the minds of business owners, including economic recovery, government spending, the overall tax burden, and the shortage of labour.
In addition, CFIB reviewed the party platforms and highlighted some of the best and most troubling commitments from each party. A sample of some of the best and worst suggestions from the parties include (see comparison chart for longer list):
|Liberal Party||Extend Canada Recovery Hiring Program (CRHP) to March 2022.||No plan to extend the wage and rent subsidies for businesses outside of tourism and to new businesses.|
|Conservative Party||Provide loans of up to $200,000 with up to 25 per cent forgivable.||Introduce EI-like payments for gig workers, contractors and the self-employed.|
|NDP||Maintain CEWS (wage subsidy) and CERS (rent subsidy) until businesses are able to fully reopen.||Increase capital gains inclusion rate to 75 per cent.|
|Bloc Québécois||Lengthen the amount of time needed to repay loans provided during pandemic.
|No plans to prolong emergency relief subsidies, even among the hardest hit sectors.|
|Green Party||Extend the wage and rent subsidies until COVID-19 pandemic-related restrictions are fully lifted.||Accelerate the increase in carbon taxes. Beginning in 2022 and up to 2030, increase carbon taxes by $25 per tonne each year.|
|People’s Party of Canada||Eliminate the deficit by the end of a first mandate through fiscal prudence and spending cuts.||Phase out all COVID spending programs (like wage and rent subsidies).|
“Regardless of which party is elected to form government, all parties need to come together to support small business recovery,” added Corinne Pohlmann, Senior Vice-President of National Affairs at CFIB. “We encourage business owners to inform themselves and make the best decision for their business on Election Day.”
Small business owners can still sign CFIB’s election petition to tell federal parties which small business recovery measures they want to see put in place by the next governing party.v