A News Release from Ontario’s NDP Official Opposition Party
Posted July 12th, 2021 on Niagara At Large
NIAGARA FALLS, Ontario — NDP Leader Andrea Horwath is renewing the call for a $1,000 tax credit for Ontarians to stay and play in Ontario this summer, just as the Ford government appears to be walking away from the economic boost for the tourism industry.
“Tourism businesses — restaurants, campgrounds, museums, attractions and more — have been devastated by the pandemic. People’s jobs and livelihoods are still at risk. Entrepreneurs’ dreams are on the line. And local economies are desperate for a boost,” said Horwath.
“The Travel Ontario Tax Credit is the help we need right now. Let’s give working families a well-needed vacation this summer, and get the hospitality, arts and culture sectors back on track. For every dollar a person spends, they’ll get a dollar back up to $1,000.”
Horwath made the call Monday in Niagara Falls. The Travel Ontario Tax Credit is a bill by NDP MPP Wayne Gates (Niagara Falls). In 2020, the Doug Ford government promised to adopt it. Then watered it down so families would only get $200 back when they spend $1,000. Now, Ford and his government have walked away from the idea until at least 2022-23.
In the Niagara region, tourism typically brings in over $2 billion annually and directly employs 40,000 people in 2,800 tourism businesses. But a recent Tourism Industry Association of Ontario survey found tourism industry businesses saw an average revenue drop of 69 per cent during the pandemic, and the Tourism Industry Association reports that 90 per cent of all tourism businesses have experienced a revenue decline.
“This bill is a win-win,” said Gates. “The Travel Ontario Tax Credit will supercharge our tourism industry from the ground up by giving people the help they need to take a much-needed vacation. And just imagine the jobs we can save, the jobs we can create and the economic stability we can give to our communities with this plan.
“This long, painful lockdown is the result of Doug Ford’s poor pandemic choices — not the choices of business owners and working folks. The Travel Ontario Tax Credit will help undo some of the damage he did.”
The Travel Ontario credit is part of Horwath and the NDP’s Safe Reopening Fund – a plan to give Ontario businesses a better chance to make this reopening permanent.
* A vastly improved third round of Ontario Small Business Support Grant payments
Unlike Doug Ford’s earlier choices, this time, the government must not leave any business behind – providing a new payment to bridge to reopening every small or medium-sized local business that’s experienced revenue decline in the third wave, compared to pre-pandemic.
* A $1,000 tourism and local restaurant tax credit
The Travel Ontario Tax Credit (https://can01.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=https%3A%2F%2Fontariondp.us4.list-manage.com%2Ftrack%2Fclick%3Fu%3D353019c4e982ae7eb8ea53150%26id%3D805b3670a5%26e%3D1ab1acd774&data=04%7C01%7CEMorrison%40ndp.on.ca%7C6f541579a2584f71310408d934e611d9%7C6b9fd2ec77a64ae0822a6bb9108fb274%7C0%7C0%7C637598985002591014%7CUnknown%7CTWFpbGZsb3d8eyJWIjoiMC4wLjAwMDAiLCJQIjoiV2luMzIiLCJBTiI6Ik1haWwiLCJXVCI6Mn0%3D%7C1000&sdata=3ls548GH1NC8jyqRgYf2mkq4E4Pm7LZZDOEO1tZ1qrg%3D&reserved=0) bill from NDP MPP Wayne Gates (Niagara Falls) gives families a $1,000 tax credit to visit qualifying tourism businesses in Ontario, including qualifying purchases at restaurants, hotels, outfitters and attractions.
* Targeted re-opening support for personal care and service-based businesses
Especially impacted by necessary public health measures, personal care businesses like salons and service-industry businesses like restaurants need access to a Safe Reopening Grant in order to open, and stay open.
* Access to forgivable loans
Businesses may need access to capital to re-open and drive economic recovery.
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