• Finance Minister Bill Morneau vows to close ‘unfair’ tax loopholes

    “When people see that the tax system is stacked against them, they can get frustrated. We need to make sure that everyone — especially including the middle class, the large group of people who don’t have access to these sort of planning methodologies — feels that the system is working for them.” … The secrecy afforded to private corporations is a central concern in the fight against tax unfairness…

  • Basic income reform would need more taxes: OECD

    Welfare reforms that would introduce public payment of an unconditional basic income to everyone of working age are worth exploring but would do little to combat poverty if not financed by extra tax, the OECD said… if existing benefit systems were abolished and the funds used to pay an unconditional, flat-rate payment for all of working age, the payout would be lower than many welfare beneficiaries currently receive.

  • Basic income hailed as way to give people chance to chase their dreams

    “What if the people who were most at risk — people from low-income and marginalized communities who are living day to day with real challenges — were able to become social entrepreneurs?” … As Ontario embarks on a basic income pilot project that would pay low-income individuals up to $16,989 annually with no strings attached, there is a chance to broaden the social innovation playing field…

  • Ottawa shouldn’t ignore hunger for tax fairness

    … the government is well aware of the popular appeal of economic justice. The Liberals’ obsession with “the middle class and those who aspire to join it” defined their successful election campaign. Once in office, Morneau vowed to restore fairness to a tax system that has in many ways contributed to, rather than mitigated, deepening economic inequality… Yet despite Morneau’s repeated mentions of tax fairness, the budget left intact all of the most egregious loopholes, offering only a few marginal reforms.

  • Wait. What if we’re not actually worse off than our parents?

    Using a database of revenue statistics from 1978-2014 that links the income of Canadians to that of their children, the agency concluded that absolute income mobility has remained fairly stable in the past four decades… people who were born between 1970 and 1984 – Generation X and the first tranche of millennials – exceed their parents’ adjusted family income through their mid-career years in roughly the same proportions as the boomers did.

  • If freer trade kills off these Canadian businesses, it would be better for everyone

    Let markets figure out what works and what doesn’t… one of the best things about trade, though no politician can say so, is that strong competition from foreigners kills a country’s weak firms… Let’s make trade as free as we can — which means much freer than it is — and by all means let’s help losers adjust. But we really do need them to lose.

  • WSIB cutting costs at expense of workers’ health, report says

    Ontario’s worker compensation board is saving money by reducing spending on drug benefits for workplace accident victims and by providing financial incentives to their health-care providers to limit treatment time, a new report compiled by a Toronto-based legal clinic says… Since 2010, the WSIB has sought to reduce its $14 billion unfunded liability, but maintains that health outcomes are improving amongst injured workers.

  • Electricity policy: What went wrong in Ontario

    There is no way of de-risking long-term projects. Political acceptability – mutable as it may be – is an essential planning requirement… Do lead the narrative on needs, alternatives, outcome. Do allow time for people to come to the right conclusion. Do offer choices. Do model solutions. Do make the right choice easy, safe and cheap as possible.

  • Innovations in Healthcare Should Focus More on Cost-Effectiveness

    Provincial governments, with support from Ottawa, should experiment with new models of provider payment that strengthen their incentive to adopt cost-effective drugs, treatment methods, and diagnostic tests… Patients should be empowered with information… Governments should also work on creating a system of Health Technology Assessment…

  • Impacts of income volatility should be wake up call for policy-makers

    The median household that suffered a loss saw its income decrease by 49 per cent year over year. That’s almost beyond comprehension… The main causes of income fluctuation… include ebbing and flowing work hours, self-employment and multiple sources of income. In other words, the new world of work. The main effects are obvious: financial stress, the inability to plan and save for emergencies let alone retirement, the relentless reality of falling further and further behind.