CFIB calls for Alberta policies to support entrepreneurs

Tax retooling, red tape elimination, WCB refund, labour law changes, minimum wage freeze among the proposals

The Canadian Federation of Independent Business has released its Small Business Platform for the next Alberta government as a provincial election looms this spring.

The organization is calling on all political parties to commit to implementing better policies to support entrepreneurs.

Richard Truscott
Richard Truscott is the Vice President, BC and Alberta, for CFIB

“Too many entrepreneurs in Alberta are struggling to survive in a very difficult economy. Regardless of which party wins the election, the next provincial government must commit to better policies to support the growth and success of small and medium-sized businesses,” said Richard Truscott, CFIB vice-president for Alberta and B.C., in a statement.

The 10 policies the organization is advocating for include:

  • apply a “small business lens” to all new government policy;
  • cut red tape;
  • reduce the small business tax;
  • balance the budget, control spending;
  • refund the Workers Compensation Board of Alberta surplus to employers;
  • scrap the provincial carbon tax;
  • re-balance labour laws;
  • freeze the minimum wage and create a training wage;
  • push back on the Canada Pension Plan payroll tax hike and federal tax changes;
  • “Just say no” to a provincial sales tax.

“Between a protracted economic downturn and a long list of aggressive policy changes from the government, Alberta’s entrepreneurs have been through a lot in the past few years. The next provincial government must do a better job of understanding the unique needs of independent businesses and finding ways to enable their success, not impair it,” said Truscott.

The organization argues that small business faces too many obstacles to success.

Too often governments create new taxes, rules, regulations, and policies without even so much as a basic understanding of the impact on small and medium-sized businesses and the economy, says the platform document. They take a one-size-fitsall approach for all businesses and then let the chips fall where they may.

Yet, 88 per cent of business owners say they want the government to consult with them before implementing policies that affect their businesses.

Mario Toneguzzi is a Troy Media business reporter based in Calgary. He writes for Calgary’s Business.


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