The Government of Canada is engaging small and medium-sized businesses to cut red tape

November 12, 2014

Red Deer - Earl Dreeshen, Member of Parliament for Red Deer, delivered introductory remarks earlier today at the Canada Revenue Agency’s (CRA) red tape reduction consultations at the Red Deer Chamber of Commerce. MP Dreeshen commended the CRA for its ongoing efforts to reduce the burden red tape places on small and medium-sized businesses.

The CRA is consulting with small and medium-sized business owners, their accountants, and their bookkeepers this fall to take stock of its recent red tape reduction measures and to seek their input on the business community’s priorities. The feedback and suggestions provided during the consultations will help the CRA set priorities for actions to further cut red tape over the next few years.

The CRA will be consulting in more than 20 cities across the country. Those not participating in the in-person consultations are able to provide their feedback through the CRA’s online consultations tool.

In 2012, the CRA consulted with small and medium businesses and subsequently took action on many fronts to cut red tape, including:

  • Through the CRA’s secure online self-service portal, businesses now have 24/7 control over more than 50 different transactions such as registering for services, making payments, filing returns, making account changes, asking questions, viewing balances, and, starting October 20, 2014, managing banking information online and signing up for pre authorized debit services;
  • The remittance thresholds for employer source deductions were revised to reduce the maximum number of payments that businesses are required to submit to the CRA, in the process eliminating more than 800,000 payroll remittances for over 50,000 small and medium-sized employers;
  • The CRA launched its first-ever mobile app, the Business Tax Reminders app, which allows small and medium-sized businesses to create custom reminders and alerts for dates related to instalment payments, returns, and remittances; and
  • The new Liaison Officer Initiative was launched to help small and medium-sized businesses get it right from start with in-person support and information by CRA officers at key points in the business cycle.

Quick Facts

  • CRA’s 2012 red tape consultations led to improvements in several areas, such as the availability and clarity of tax information, online services, the collection of information, reporting obligations and frequency of filing, and more. The results can be found in the Focussing on Small Business Priorities: Canada Revenue Agency Consultations on Cutting Red Tape report.
  • In 2011-2012, the CRA sent out nearly 129 million pieces of personalized administrative correspondence to individuals, businesses, and representatives.
  • The CRA is improving the clarity and simplicity of its communications. A concise and consistent plain language approach to the millions of notices and letters sent to Canadians will help to ensure taxpayers are better supported in meeting their tax obligations and accessing the benefits to which they may be entitled.
  • The CRA’s online consultation tool went live at cra-arc.gc.ca/redtapereduction, on October 8, and closes on December 12.

Quotes

“With the support of local businesses and stakeholders in initiatives such as red tape reduction consultations, our Government can continue to cut red tape effectively, so that business owners can focus on what they do best: growing their business, creating jobs, and stimulating economic growth in communities across the country.”

Earl Dreeshen, Member of Parliament for Red Deer