#Airbnb; #AlexDagg; #Quebec, #BritishColumbia; #TheHotelAssociationofCanada; #AlanaBaker; TrudeauLiberals
Ottawa, Aug 18 (Canadian-Media): Airbnb, a privately owned company which rents out condos and houses, had been for long advocating, with its five-page submission, to Federal Liberal party to set rules for it in the market, media reports said.
In the submission Airbnb had asked Liberals to set some regulations around offers from online service providers, including applying sales taxes, all of which the government has so far ignored.
“We think as a platform our hosts should pay taxes. I know people get shocked when we say that, but we do. We think we should be contributing,” Alex Dagg, Airbnb’s public policy manager in Canada, said in an interview.
“We just need to figure out what are the appropriate rules in place to do that and how can we facilitate that.”
Rules had been enacted reportedly by Quebec, British Columbia and some cities to get tax revenues from bookings on Airbnb.
Quebec had been able to get a revenue of about $2.8 million over the first six months of the tax agreement.
The Hotel Association of Canada said Thursday the Liberals should give detailed information on all home-renting activity.
The industry group argued that rules should be enacted for hosts who rent out multiple homes or units for months on end as part of a larger commercial operation.
“We are not against Airbnb and we’re not against the competition. Competition is, in fact, a good thing. What we’re looking for here is fairness and a level playing field,” said Alana Baker, the association’s director of government relations.
Airbnb says there are some 80,000 people who offer places to rent in Canada, and they earn on average about $5,500 annually.
(Reporting by Asha Bajaj)
#JohnTory, #gunviolence; CityofToronto; #ChiefMarkSaunders; #CrimeStoppers
Toronto, May 31 (Canadian-Media): Toronto Mayor John Tory released today the following statement on gun violence:
"The incidents of gun violence we have seen in our city in the past few days are shocking and can in no way be accepted or brushed aside.
As Mayor, I am troubled by every act of violence in our city regardless of where it happens.
This morning, I spoke to Chief Mark Saunders about last night's murder and other recent acts of violence in our city. I have been assured that Toronto Police are doing everything possible to bring the perpetrators of these despicable crimes to justice. Police are also deploying additional resources where they believe they will be most effective. I will be following up with him and relevant City officials in the days to come to ensure that we are doing everything possible to reduce the number of these incidents and assist with law enforcement.
I know we are all committed to ensuring Toronto continues to be a safe city. I encourage anyone who has information that could help solve these crimes to call police or Crime Stoppers and help us ensure we catch those who would threaten our city's safety."
#Canada'sfamilyjusticesystem; #child'sphysicalemotionalpsychologicalsafety, BillC-78, #HouseofCommons, #accessibilityandefficiencyoffamilyjusticesystem
Ottawa, May 22 (Canadian-Media): Canada's family justice system are undergoing complete overhaul by the Liberal government to prioritize children's best interests, media reports said.
The first major overhaul, in more than 20 years, to reportedly address family violence and child poverty, was proposed by Bill C-78, which was tabled Tuesday in the House of Commons.
Other proposed changes include adoption of more neutral terminology, leaving out current terms like "custody" and "access" in favour of "parenting orders" and "parenting time."
These proposed changes would reportedly ensure a court's consideration of the best interests of the child's physical, emotional and psychological safety and well being.
Canada's federal divorce laws/Courtesy of CBCNews
Besides, the relationship of the child to parents, grandparents and other members. the child's linguistic, cultural and spiritual heritage, including Indigenous heritage, as well as the child's own views and preferences would be given a priority.
Other proposed amendments include: a parent to provide proper notification of relocation; the court's decision would take into account family violence and its impact on future parenting arrangements; establishing more tools to enforce child support; more accessibility and efficiency of the family justice system to ensure less time consuming and expensive visits to the court.
#TheCoalitionAvenirQuebec; #CAQ; #federalimmigrationauthorities; #FrançoisLegault; #Philippe Couillard #SimonJolin-Barrette
Quebec/Ottawa, May 16 (Canadian-Media): The Coalition Avenir Quebec (CAQ)'s plan to give newcomers stringent tests to prove their French speaking and conform to Quebec values was met with criticism, media reports said.
"We do not want to keep too many people who do not accept our language, our values and to participate in the workforce," Leader François Legault told Radio-Canada.
The plan, laid out in an "orientation document" was made public this week and said that immigration candidates would receive a temporary three-year permit, referred to as a certificat d'accompagnement transitoire (CAT).
These candidates would reportedly be tested on their knowledge of French language to be eligible to apply for Canadian residency.
The CAQ's Justice Critic, Simon Jolin-Barrette, said the plan is designed to help people join Quebec society.
"All our plan is about is responsibility. We will help the immigrants to have a great integration here in Quebec," said Jolin-Barrette.
The CAQ said it would reportedly also like to reduce immigration to 40,000 people per year.
Legault said newcomers who are in Quebec and have been issued a transitionary certificate would need to meet three criteria within three years: pass a French test, pass a values test and show they are actively looking for a job.
"I think fundamentally what Mr. Legault is saying is that you must fear immigration and that's scary. On the contrary, Quebec and Canada were and are built on immigration and immigration is a good thing," said Quebec Immigration Minister David Heurtel
The aim is to be more selective, said Legualt in their choice of newcomers to ensure they speak French and can be integrated in the labour force and in its culture.
People in difficult circumstances, including parents of young children or those caring for ill loved ones would reportedly be given extensions.
But Newcomers who repeatedly fail the tests would not be eligible to apply for citizenship and be flagged at the federal level as living in Quebec without status.
"If the person does not want to learn French, they will not have their selection certificate, so they... become a person without status and it's up to the federal government to decide what to do with that person."
Describing this proposal impracticable, Liberal Leader Philippe Couillard said it treats immigrants as problems that need solving.
"This cannot work and it sends the wrong message," he said.
#Ontario, #reviewPublicHolidayRules, #EmploymentStandardsAct; #ChangingWorkplacesReview; #KevinFlynn; #publicholidaypay; #FairWorkplacesBetterJobsAct2017; #
Ottawa, May 7 (Canadian-Media): A review of the public holiday system under Part X of the Employment Standards Act, 2000 (ESA) will be conducted in 2018 by the Ministry of Labour, Ontario based on feedback and discussions with stakeholders, media reports said.
The review. the first comprehensive one in the province's labour and employment legislation in a generation, will form part of the Ontario government's on-going response to the Changing Workplaces Review (CWR),
“The Changing Workplaces Review was about bringing more fairness to workplaces in Ontario. Bill 148 is a reflection of that vision, with measures such as a $15 minimum wage, equal pay for equal work and paid sick days put in place in order to ensure that workers’ rights are always protected and that they are paid a decent wage. This review of the public holiday pay section of the Employment Standards Act is part of our overall commitment to address the realities of the modern workplace and create a fair society, ” Kevin Flynn, Ontario Minister of Labour said.
Public holiday rules were the source of the most complaints under the ESA, found the CWRs, and these needed to be simplified.
The public holiday pay (PHP) formula was reportedly amended by the CWR which had helped inform the Fair Workplaces, Better Jobs Act, 2017 (FWBJA) .
The government has made a new regulation, as an interim measure, O. Reg. 375/18, that reinstates the PHP formula that applied prior to the FWBJA for all employees.
The regulation will come into effect July 1, 2018.
#ConsumerProtectionOntario; #creditreportingagencies, #onlinecreditreports, #currentcreditscore, #TracyMacCharles, #AccesstoConsumerCreditReportsandElevatorAvailabilityAct
Ottawa, May 5 (Canadian-Media): Ontario has passed legislation to give consumers easier access to credit information and improve access to elevators, media reports said.
The new law will allow Ontario to become the first jurisdiction in the world to establish standards for elevator repair times and will give Ontario consumers the strongest rights in Canada over information held by consumer reporting agencies.
According to reports, Consumer Protection Ontario received from January 2015 to December 2017, approximately 2,000 complaints and inquiries about consumer reporting agencies.
"This new law will make life a little bit easier for people across the province. We heard from a lot of people during debate, and I want them all to know that we’re committed to continuing our work with them. I know we can count on them to continue to provide constructive feedback as regulations are developed," Tracy MacCharles, Ontario Minister of Government and Consumer Services
The Access to Consumer Credit Reports and Elevator Availability Act will reportedly requires credit reporting agencies give access to consumers to their online credit reports and current credit score free of charge at least two times per year.
by credit reporting agencies should include the credit score in a consumer report given to third parties in the past 12 months.
In the event of an identity theft, credit freeze at the request of a consumer, should be implemented by credit reporting agencies
The province is also reducing elevator outages and improving access to elevators through enhanced enforcement of maintenance requirements.
All of the 19 recommendations proposed in the independent study by the Honourable J. Douglas Cunningham would be addressed by Ontario’s elevator action plan.
According to official reports, there are about 20,000 elevators in approximately 10,000 residential and institutional buildings in Ontario, including long-term care and retirement homes.
Each day approximately 655,000 elevator trips are taken on these elevators.
Ontario would reportedly also publish information about elevator performance to help consumers make better decisions before they rent or buy any place in the high rise building.
Creation of new standards for new high-rises, would also be considered, to ensure enough availability of elevators to adequately serve residents.
Public and businesses would be consulted by Ontario in the development of these standards.
Ottawa, May 1 (Canadian-Media): Trudeau government had been requested by members of the Senate's Aboriginal peoples committeea to put off its marijuana legalization plans for roughly a year to allow Indigenous communities time to prepare, media reports said.
If passed, the amendment would delay the bill's full implementation for up to a year.
As currently written, the bill stipulates the law does not come into force until a date is fixed by an order of the governor-in-council — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's cabinet.
A final vote on the bill is scheduled to occur in the Senate on or before June 7, with legalization expected to follow eight to 12 weeks later.
The committee, chaired by Liberal Saskatchewan Sen. Lillian Dyck, said in its report on Bill C-45 that the government simply did not consult enough with First Nations, Inuit and Métis communities before pushing ahead with its plan to legalize the drug.
The committee said the government should take that time to negotiate a revenue-sharing agreement with First Nations communities.
"Many communities are really worried about the potential adverse effects on their members, and especially on their youth, and it may be even worse because of the trauma in their communities," Dyck said, adding existing social issues in Indigenous communities could be made worse by increased drug use.
Lillian Dyck/Facebook page
The committee has heeded a request from Manny Jules, the chief commissioner of the First Nations Tax Commission, who recommended the federal government and the provinces hand cannabis taxing authority over to First Nations governments so they can impose their own levy on marijuana grown and sold on reserves.
"The way the bill has been crafted shows there was very little consultation," Conservative Alberta Sen. Scott Tannas told reporters.
"There was no thought given to the [tax issues], and there are First Nations that are keen on economic opportunities that would come from the legitimate production of cannabis and they feel that they're behind. There are Indigenous governments that want to see economic development and get revenue ... None of that appears to have been considered."
First Nations say their governments will face new social challenges from legal cannabis, but they stand to gain nothing from Ottawa's plan.
Under Jules' proposal, Ottawa and the provinces would cede ground to First Nations to collect taxes, providing a new source of much-needed revenue to their communities.
The committee recommended an amendment to the legislation that would implement "appropriate excise tax collection and sharing measures from revenue generated by cannabis produced on First Nations lands."
"The Department of Finance [should] immediately work with interested First Nations and First Nations institutions to allow them to collect cannabis excise tax revenues," the committee report said, calling for an amendment to the First Nations Fiscal Management Act to provide for a First Nation law-making power to levy cannabis excise taxes on reserve lands.
The funds could then be used to develop cannabis-related laws and regulations on-reserve, fund campaigns to educate young people about the dangers of cannabis use and bolster First Nations police forces.
The recommendation to extend taxation powers to First Nations will now be referred to the Senate's social affairs committee, which will make the ultimate decision on which amendments to the bill should get the green light. The whole Senate would have to vote on the amended bill, which — if approved — would go back to the House of Commons for a final vote.
The Aboriginal peoples committee also found there is no "culturally appropriate" educational material ready to ensure Indigenous people understand the new law — which will legalize the drug, lead to the creation of provincially-run retail distribution systems and allow for home cultivation, among other sweeping changes to the country's drug laws.
The committee heard from a number of witnesses who said the public education campaign that addresses the health effects of cannabis is woefully inadequate and is rolling out too close to the proposed legalization date — giving people too little time to learn about its harmful effects.
It also noted a number of First Nations police witnesses warned they are unprepared for a wave of legal pot.
In its report, the committee quoted Steve Burton of the Tsuut'ina Nation Police Service, a reserve outside Calgary, who said his force doesn't have the tools it needs to enforce the act — which actually stiffens penalties for some offences, including giving cannabis to a minor — or to monitor drug-impaired driving.
"We don't have the people trained, the drug recognition experts. Those are training programs that require extensive time ... For us to arrange that training when we're already low on manpower, we have to find a way to backfill that position or positions with other officers," he said.
In an appearance before the Senate's social affairs committee earlier this week, the Canadian Real Estate Association encouraged the government to suspend provisions that will allow people to grow pot at home until there are better regulations in place to avoid property damage and sinking home prices.
The Liberal government has said it plans to limit home marijuana growers to four plants per household. The government initially intended to limit plants to 100 centimetres in height, but the House of Commons approved an amendment that removed that restriction.
#StatisticsCanada, # JamesMarple, #Canada, #inflationRate, #atlanticCanada
Ottawa, Mar 24 (Canadian-Media): Canada's annual inflation rate had jumped to 2.2. percent in February, from 1.7 percent in January, Statistics Canada reported on Friday.
Statistics Canada Image
Rise in the cost of living by 2.2 percent annually, its highest level since 2014 is due mainly to the sharp increases in the price of energy, gasoline and food at the restaurants, mortgage interest costs by 5.3 percent, 12.6 percent and 4 and 2.3 percent respectively in the past 12 months.
Statistics Canada Image
Statistics Canada Image
"That's a big swing from recent years, when falling borrowing costs were regularly holding down inflation," Bank of Montreal economist Doug Porter said. "Clearly, the pendulum has swung on that one."
On the other had there had been decrease in price for electricity by 4.7 per cent, traveller accommodation by 4.8 per cent, digital computing equipment and devices by 5.9 percent, video equipment by 10.1 per cent and furniture by 1.8 per cent in the past 12 months.
Atlantic Canada experienced the highest inflation rate across the country in February.
"Growth was strongest in the Atlantic provinces, led by higher prices for food purchased from stores," the data agency said in a release.
Statistics Canada Image
James Marple, Toronto-Dominion Bank economist believed that recent minimum wage hikes was a factor in the increase in restaurant meal prices.
But Maple reportedly thinks the Bank of Canada will be paying close attention to Friday's inflation report.
"After several months below two per cent, inflation pressures have picked up and have moved on top of the Bank of Canada's target," Marple said. "Today's data does create the risk that the Bank of Canada moves sooner, but with downside risks to the economic outlook still elevated, this summer remains most likely to see the next policy interest rate hike."
(Reporting by Asha Bajaj)
#ThePublicSectorSalaryDisclosureAct, #provincialgovernment, #Crownagencies, #corporations, #OntarioPowerGeneration, #hospitals, #municipalities, #schoolboards, #universities, #colleges, #not-for-profitorganizations, #EleanorMcMahon
Ottawa, Mar 23 (Canadian-Media): Ontario government, has released on Mar 23 the salaries of Ontario Public Service and broader public sector employees who were paid $100,000 or more in 2017 In accordance with The Public Sector Salary Disclosure Act (PSSDA), media reports said.
The PSSDA applies to the provincial government, Crown agencies and corporations, Ontario Power Generation and subsidiaries, publicly funded organizations such as hospitals, municipalities, school boards, universities and colleges, and not-for-profit organizations that receive public funding from Ontario to disclose annually the names, positions, salaries and total taxable benefits of employees paid $100,000 or more in the previous calendar year.
Since its enactment in 1996, PSSDA for disclosure of $100,000 salary threshold, has not changed and has not been adjusted to keep up with inflation.
If the salary threshold was adjusted for inflation, it would be $151,929 in today’s dollars, reducing the number of employees included in the compendium by 85 percent.
Proactively releasing information on public sector salaries demonstrates Ontario's commitment to openness and transparency. As part of this commitment, every disclosure dating back to 1996 is now available in accessible, downloadable, sortable formats.
The annual compendium released by the government can be found in the form of a downloadable, machine-readable format as well as in a sortable, searchable tables on Ontario.ca/salarydisclosure, making it more accessible to the public.
“Ontario’s commitment to openness and transparency includes releasing public sector salaries annually. Information is now available in downloadable, machine-readable formats. We will continue to transform government to make it more innovative, more efficient, and more accountable to the people of Ontario,” Eleanor McMahon, President of the Treasury Board was reported to state.
Reasons for employees' appearances in the compendium, include: employees progressing in their career, natural progression through salary ranges, overtime payments, retroactive pay awards, performance payments and payments that may be required on retirement.
(Reporting by Asha Bajaj)
#JohnTory, #firearmslegislation, #Ottawa, #Ontario, #Canada, RalphGoodale, #domesticguntrafficking
Toronto Mayor John Tory's statement on new federal firearms legislation
John Tory/Facebook page
"Today, the Government of Canada introduced legislation to tighten restrictions on gun sales and to crack down on illegal handguns and assault weapons.
As Mayor of Toronto, I believe it is my job to stand up for Toronto and all its residents. A major part of that job includes advocating for gun control that makes sense – that keeps guns off of our streets, out of the hands of criminals, and away from killing or injuring innocent people.
Earlier this month, I was in Ottawa at a summit hosted by Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale to call on the government to toughen up Canada's gun laws to reduce gun trafficking, in particular domestic gun trafficking.
The legislation Minister Goodale has tabled today looks to enhance background checks on those trying to buy firearms and urges retailers to keep adequate records to assist police investigations into domestic gun trafficking. It also would add more rules around how restricted and prohibited firearms, like handguns and assault weapons, are moved through the community.
This is a good start for a national discussion on improving our gun laws and, in the weeks ahead, I hope to see the government look at further strengthening the rules to keep guns off our streets.
It is long past time to take bold action to fight domestic gun trafficking.
This isn’t about punishing those who obey the law. Those who obey the law have nothing to fear. This is about tightening and toughening our laws so we prevent loopholes that can be exploited by criminals."