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Small business confidence in BC plateauing out as new taxes continue to worry entrepreneurs

Small businesses in Prince George and the North are concerned about the new taxes being implemented by the government including the Employer’s Health Tax as well as the Carbon Tax and minimum wage.

The Canadian Federation of Independent Business’s April Small Business Confidence was released this week where BC is a shade under 56 points, falling below the National Average.

“We have seen the index in BC kind of plateau out over the past three months with not a lot of change. Reading into that, we think small businesses are going through this phase of adapting to the slew of new policies that are coming into place by the provincial government,” said Muriel Protzer, Alberta/BC Analyst with the CFIB.

Hiring intentions continue to weaken as well due to the EHT as well as the Carbon Tax and the rising minimum wage as the main culprits.

Protzer adds this could pose a much bigger challenge for university students who need to find work.

“So for those who are coming out of university and looking for that first-time job it may be more difficult this time and we have seen hiring intentions as reported by our members, we have seen those stumble a little bit in the recent months.”

She believes in order for the tax to become more digestible, a major change needs to take place.

“The exemption threshold, which is currently under $500,000 in payroll should be increased. For example, we are advocating it to be increased to 1.25 million and there is merit to that as Manitoba has a similar payroll tax and that is there exemption threshold.”

Nova Scotia has the most optimistic small business owners in Canada with a rating of just under 67 points while Alberta ranks at the bottom at just over 44 points.

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