Liberals vote against own promise to make CRA more client-focused by voting down Motion M-43

September 22, 2016

Pat Kelly, MP Calgary Rocky Ridge

September 22nd, 2016

OTTAWA – Despite the Liberal Party’s promise to reform the Canada Revenue Agency to make it more client-focused, yesterday the Liberal Dominated House of Commons voted down Motion M-43 which would have directed the Standing Committee on Finance to study ways to create an enforceable duty of care between CRA and taxpayers to give the latter legal remedies in case of gross negligence by the former.

“I am disappointed that the Liberals think protecting taxpayers from gross negligence, and increasing accountability for a powerful government agency, is a ‘solution in search of a problem.’” Mr. Kelly said today. “This motion handed the Liberals a gift-wrapped opportunity to keep their campaign promise to make CRA more ‘client-focused,’ but it seems that they are more concerned about growing and protecting government than protecting Canadian taxpayers.”

“CRA needs extraordinary powers to do its job, but should be extraordinarily accountable as a result,” Mr. Kelly continued. “Gross negligence at CRA is rare, but can have devastating effects on families and businesses. M-43 sought to give Canadians recourse if so harmed. However, instead of standing up for the little guy, as they traditionally claim to do, the NDP chose to put the interest of a powerful agency ahead of the interest of taxpayers. This motion is simply about accountability.”

Mr. Kelly concluded by saying, “The truly baffling part of the Liberal and NDP opposition to this motion is that the courts have already ruled that CRA owes a duty of care to taxpayers in some cases. Parliament needs to respond to these rulings and introduce coherent legislation. M-43 would have helped do just that. Instead, the other parties chose to just ignore this judicial trend, leaving the courts to do the job that we, as Members of Parliament, were elected to do.”

To see Mr. Kelly’s recorded response, please visit: https://youtu.be/Sy7TP42iWS0