Pat Kelly Responds to CRA’s Decision to Tax Retail Employees on their Discounts

October 10, 2017

One might not have thought it possible, but the Liberals have found a new way to nickel and dime Canadian taxpayers to fund their out of control spending.

A CRA official confirmed via an email to the Globe and Mail that they will start taxing employee discounts. This new tax will hurt some of the lowest paid workers in the Canadian economy, and given the complexity of calculating and documenting such transactions, it is expected that most retail employers will simply eliminate such discounts rather than subject themselves to onerous new compliance requirements.

Retail employees are all part of “the middle class or those working hard to join it” and will be hurt by this measure.

This announcement also directly contradicts the Liberals’ campaign promise and the Minister’s mandate letter which call for the CRA to be more “client friendly” and to ease the burden of tax compliance.

Furthermore, decisions like this should be announced by the Minister responsible, not emailed to a single reporter. Minister Diane Lebouthillier is responsible for the CRA and Canadians will want to know if she agrees with CRA officials who want to tax employee discounts, or if she was unaware of this change despite warnings heard last month at the Finance Committee.

I will continue to work with Conservative Party Leader Andrew Scheer and my colleague Pierre Poilievre (Shadow Minister of Finance) to hold the Liberal government accountable for their actions.

Pat Kelly
Shadow Minister of National Revenue