Members of a Saskatoon business group are planning to protest proposed federal tax changes.
The North Saskatoon Business Association (NSBA) will hold a rally Thursday, with people encouraged to picket against the federal Liberals’ plans to limit various loopholes in the tax code that benefit incorporated businesses.
The changes have been billed as a way of preventing wealthy Canadians from ducking the taxman by incorporating.
But NSBA executive director Keith Moen told 650 CKOM’s Brent Loucks Wednesday that the changes appear to target more than just the highest earners.
“The more that people learn about this, the more they become aware that this isn’t a thing about attacking the rich and it’s not a thing about attacking the business people. It’s truly an attack on the middle class,” he said.
Moen said the planned rally stems from widespread opposition he’s hearing from business leaders.
“I’m getting quite an earful. I’ve never seen this type of response from, certainly, our membership and the business community overall.”
The Liberal tax changes would target a practice known as income sprinkling, which allows a business owner to spread income across family members to lower their tax burden, even if those family members aren’t employed by the business.
Other proposals would limit the ability for corporations to convert profits into capital gains, which are taxed at a lower rate than salaries, and to hold business income in passive investments.
Moen said he feared the proposed changes would end up hurting not just small business owners, but also employees.
“So there’s going to be less jobs, less money available to pay competitive and increasing salaries,” he said.
The NSBA rally is scheduled to run Thursday from noon to 1 p.m. Demonstrators are due to meet in the Saskatoon Funeral Home parking lot on 4th Avenue. From there, they’ll move to the Canada Revenue Agency building located about a block away.