2017 Canada Federal Budget: What's in it for You and What's it Going to Cost?

“It’s been dubbed the innovation-and-skills budget, the feminist budget, the do-nothing budget, the do-it-later budget, the wait-and-see budget,” according to a Maclean’s article, and I have to agree. This  reminds me of the Peanuts cartoons, where when the adults talk, it comes out as “Whah, whah, whah.” So, in other words, it’s just a lot of talk. I hear noise, but don’t hearing anything comprehensible!

For the everyday business owner, there is not a lot in it for them. Just the usual – more taken away. And, on that note, here are my takeaways:

For us, accountants and other professionals who bill by the hour, or after the work is completed where “billed-basis accounting” is used, we will no longer be allowed to exclude the income we have not billed (hey, if you have joined the crowd in Value Based Pricing, this will not affect you! Aren’t you smart?) This will kill the lawyers! On the realistic note, if your unbilled work is fairly consistent, it will only hurt a bit and then fade in years, as it is a timing issue only. Then, it will be back to what it is now.

The average entrepreneur with employees may see a rise in Employment Insurance (EI) leaves. This can be anyone from a mother taking 18 months versus the usual 12, to a person off to care for an adult family member who requires significant support in order to recover from a critical illness or injury. This means more time without your trained staff, so perhaps there will be a cost to replace them while they are away. There will be an EI cost to the employer, because the EI premium will increase from 1.63 to 1.68 percent in 2018-19. On a good note, it was 1.88 percent from 2013 to 2016, so it is still down overall.

Daycare credits? If our entrepreneurs are having issues having a family and a career, or have staff with these issues, it may pay off to bring daycare into the office. The government will give a 25 percent investment tax credit for childcare spaces. It could be to build or expand facilities. There must be employees who will benefit, and must be ancillary to the taxpayer’s business. Maximum value of the credit will be $10,000 per space created. Note that unused amounts in a year can be carried back three years and forward 20! The kids will be off to postsecondary education by then!

Where is the innovation part? Well, that is in the wait-and-see part ... and, more to come on the feminist part, too, or is that all talk?