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Flaherty pledges to open tax court to disabled

Wednesday, November 24th, 2010

Nov 23 2010
The court is prevented from hearing from those who owe no taxes, but want to appeal for the right to have a Registered Disability Savings Plan and qualify for government grants… “We created the RDSP, and it’s really important to me,” said Flaherty, who has a mentally challenged son and, like other politicians, had long heard parents of the disabled pleading for options to help prepare for their old age. “The fact that someone has taxable income or not should not stand in the way of establishing their right to the disability tax credit (and RDSP),” he said.

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Tax savings on bigger CPP far off

Wednesday, November 10th, 2010

Nov 10 2010
… requiring workers and their employers to contribute more to CPP would make for fewer low-income workers, and workers with income not so low, qualifying for the tax-free Guaranteed Income Supplement (GIS) to the Old Age Pension. Both of these pensions are a significant cost item in the federal budget, and the cost is projected to soar as the Baby Boom generation starts to pass the age of 65. GIS benefits are phased out as income, excluding Old Age Security, increases… this reality may help to explain why Flaherty joined Duncan in trying to persuade other provinces to throw their support behind an expanded CPP.

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Law blocks disabled from people’s tax court

Saturday, November 6th, 2010

Nov 05 2010
A gap in recent legislation appears to have turned the people’s court for unhappy taxpayers into a court without access to the poor and disabled… For a person to be eligible to make or receive contributions to an RDSP [Registered Disability Savings Plan], that person must be sufficiently disabled to qualify in the tax year for a disability tax credit. That requires the support of a doctor, and the agreement of the Canada Revenue Agency. Doctors and the CRA have turned away folks who qualify for Canada Pension Plan disability pensions…

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Billionaires — To envy or raid for our benefit?

Sunday, September 12th, 2010

Sep 10 2010
The Trouble With Billionaires… is about the ethically challenged and politically coddled elite… an illustration of the growing heights of income disparity… the well-to-do, of various degrees, would never have had as much without the rest of us… McQuaig and Brooks contend the nation’s high flyers would still strive as hard for fun and country if governments claimed a majority interest in the portion of their income and estates they regard as excessive. Then, with the rich paying more toward public programs, Canada could become a happier place, with taller, healthier and better-educated citizens, they argue.

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Disability benefits need insurance backup

Tuesday, August 31st, 2010

Aug 30 2010
About 400 disabled employees of Nortel Networks Corp. are scheduled to have their income replacement and medical benefits cut off by year’s end. Nortel is being broken up under creditor protection. Their only hope of getting further money ahead of other creditors is a bill proposed by Liberal Senator Art Eggleton, a former Toronto mayor. But time is running short. It’s a disgrace that federal and provincial governments have yet to do anything to prevent this sort of situation.

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Ottawa and Ontario call for higher CPP benefits

Friday, June 11th, 2010

Jun 10 2010
“I believe that we should consider a modest, phased-in and fully funded enhancement to defined benefits under the Canada Pension Plan in order to increase savings adequacy in the future,” federal Finance Minister James Flaherty says in a letter to Ontario’s Finance Minister Dwight Duncan Thursday. The Flaherty letter was released late in the day after Duncan made public a letter he had earlier sent to his provincial and federal counterparts calling for similar enhancements to the CPP.

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Canada dares not fall behind in cutting corporate taxes

Saturday, May 29th, 2010

May 29 2010
… without reducing the federal corporate rate a further 3 percentage points, Canada would lose 233,000 jobs and $47 billion in capital investments. “Abandonment of Canada’s tax competitiveness strategy (would) leave the country with a corporate income tax rate of 29 per cent, considerably higher than the average of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development and many emerging economies.”

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Parliament to vote on securing pensions at failing companies

Tuesday, May 25th, 2010

May 25, 2010
Politicians of all federal parties are being pressed to vote Wednesday to raise the security of vulnerable pension plans. Pensioners are urging them to support a bill from a Thunder Bay New Democrat that would bring Canada’s bankruptcy law up to the standard in most other developed nations… The bill would give pension promises equal standing with secured loans when companies restructure under bankruptcy protection, or go out of business.

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You could soon be paying more for drugs

Tuesday, May 18th, 2010

May 18 2010
Ontario has moved to force down generic drug prices, while leaving pharmacies to recover lost revenue elsewhere. That could leave consumers and sponsors of private drug plans paying more for dispensing fees, patented drugs and other services. Meanwhile, another shoe is about to drop that could further exaggerate differences in prices and fees depending on who is paying. A coalition is forming so sponsors of private drug plans can better use their buying power to negotiate lower prices, and also to save money through better management of drug use by employees.

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Flaherty right to worry about burden on young workers [pensions]

Tuesday, May 11th, 2010

May 10 2010
Jim Flaherty has stated the first principle for any national initiative to help Canadians increase their retirement income should be: Do no harm… “I think we have to be conscious that we don’t put a burden onto (young workers) that benefits those of us who are older. That’s important. “I want (younger workers) to have confidence in the system. I also want the system to be there for them when they’re older.”

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