The Newmarket Chamber of Commerce, in partnership with the Chamber network, has achieved a number of advocacy wins and successes on behalf of the Newmarket business community. Here’s a look at some of our recent progress.
Reducing the Regulatory Burden:
The Newmarket Chamber of Commerce has extensively campaigned for the Provincial Government to reduce regulatory burdens on businesses. The 2019 Fall Economic Statement demonstrates that the Government has listened. It’s a long read, so here are a few of the highlights:
· Reducing the Corporate Tax rates from 3.5% to 3.2%
· Removing WSIB premiums
· Reducing red-tape for businesses across all sectors
In response to our call for the Government to confer with companies to solve industry problems, the Province has launched a website for businesses and individuals to suggest areas of red tape which could be removed.
Bill 50, Cutting Red Tape for Motor Vehicle Dealers Act, 2018 allows specified auto dealers to electronically apply for items such as permits and number plates, which will expedite the registration process.
Skills and Labour
We campaigned for the government to alter the Tradesperson apprenticeship process to make it easier to acquire Journeyperson status. New rules lowering the Journeyperson-to-Apprentice Ration to 1-1, will make it easier for Trade apprentices to receive this status.
York Region has announced The Development Charges Deferral Pilot Program for Large Office Buildings. Reducing development charges is a key goal for the Newmarket Chamber and this pilot program represents the first step in helping businesses with these costs.
We spoke out against Bill 148 which would have increased the minimum wage to $15 an hour, creating a cost many companies in Newmarket couldn’t afford. The Making Ontario Open for Business Act gave a full repeal of Bill 148 keeping the minimum wage at $14 an hour.
Our focus on extending access to broadband for businesses in Newmarket has resulted in numerous wins.
- Our letter to Town Council and meetings with Councillors highlighted a need for a focus on broadband. In response, the Town included broadband as a key priority in the Town’s 2016-2018 Economic Development Strategy.
- Our 2016 Policy Resolution to the Canadian Chamber of Commerce called on the Federal Government to bridge the broadband gap in rural areas. In late 2016, the CRTC declared broadband an essential service and mandated providers to offer specific high speed internet access not just for homes and businesses, but also along major Canadian roads.
- In 2016, we also put forth a policy resolution on broadband which was adopted for action by the Ontario Chamber network.
- In January 2017, we campaigned to oppose legislation that would tax Health and Dental Benefits which would have a detrimental impact on businesses and employees. In response to the overwhelming opposition in taxing employee provided health benefits, the Federal government announced that any such legislation is off the table.
- Our 2015 Deputation to Newmarket Town Council called for a clearer economic development strategy and the resources to create vibrant and livable corridors along Davis Drive and Yonge Street. It also stressed the critical need of implementing affordable broadband. Both points have been included in the official Town of Newmarket 2016-2018 Development Strategy.