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5 Things Friday

What your government did for you this week

Non-Resident Speculation Tax (NRST)

        Ontario’s non-resident speculation tax (NRST) is helping to address unsustainable demand in the Greater Golden Horseshoe while ensuring Ontario continues to be a place that welcomes all new residents, as new data shows that home purchases by buyers who are not citizens or permanent residents of Canada have decreased. Newly released data from provincially collected tax information shows that individuals who are not citizens or permanent residents of Canada, or foreign corporations, accounted for 3.2 per cent of home purchases across the Greater Golden Horseshoe Region, down from 4.7 per cent  since the launch of Ontario’s Fair Housing Plan this spring. In Toronto, 5.6 per cent of transactions were made by foreign buyers, down from 7.2 per cent. 

 

Rowan’s Law

        Following a year of thorough consultation, discussion and collaboration, the Rowan’s Law Advisory Committee report for the prevention and management of concussions in amateur sport was tabled in the Legislature. The report, which will inform Ontario’s next steps for concussion safety, focuses on safe participation in sport through surveillance, prevention, detection, management and awareness. Working with sport leaders across Ontario, the province will review and build on the report’s recommendations to make our sport system  safer for everyone. 

 

The Cutting Unnecessary Red Tap Act

        Ontario introduced legislation, The Cutting Unnecessary Red Tape Act, 2017, that if passed would have proposed measures to help small businesses grow and cut red tape that include:

  • Reducing regulatory costs: Requiring all ministries to offset every dollar of new administrative costs to business by removing $1.25 of old and unnecessary costs
  • Streamlining compliance for small business: ensuring that undue burdens aren’t placed on small businesses when new or amended regulations are introduced, while maintaining robust environmental, health and safety requirements and other public interest protections.
  • International or national standards alignment: Increasing harmonization with other jurisdictions and adopting international or national standards, where appropriate, when developing or reviewing regulations.
  • Electronic transmission guarantee: Providing businesses the option to electronically submit any required documentation to the Government of Ontario instead of more costly paper submissions.

 

Support for Victims of Hurricane Irma

        Premier Kathleen Wynne has announced the provinces support through relief efforts for people affected by Hurricane Irma. The impacts of the hurricane are complex and devastating, and as the province recognizes how vital delivering aid is to those affected by natural disasters, the Ontario government is contributing $150,000 to the Canadian Red Cross to assist people in the Caribbean. 

 

Commuter Bike Parking Program

        Ontario is making it easier for cyclists to commute to and from work, school and appointments with the  construction of new, secure bike storage lockers at GO Transit stations and car pool lots across southern Ontario. This  investment is part of Ontario’s Climate Change Action Plan and is funded by proceeds from the province’s cap on pollution and carbon market. Eight bike lockers will be installed at each of 15 commuter parking lots across the Greater Toronto Hamilton Area, Niagara and Simcoe Region for a total of 120 bike lockers. . Work will be finished by the end of March 2018. 

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