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Freeland was questioned about affordability during the hearing on the GST bill


Appearing before the House of Commons Finance Committee on Monday, Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland defended the government’s response to Canadians’ affordability concerns as “focused” and fiscally responsible.

“The support that we’re talking about today, the GST tax credit, really supports what everyone around this table now agrees is right,” Freeland said, appearing before the committee to testify about Bill C-30. One of the Liberals’ two pieces of legislation focused on affordability. “It’s targeted, it’s focused, it’s reaching the people who need it most. And we’re carefully monitoring the spending.”

Freeland was peppered with questions from opposition MPs on topics ranging from the government’s handling of inflation and the resulting rising federal revenue to a carbon tax during the hearing, apart from the bill’s passage through the House, which ended early. The Ukraine crisis is having an impact on global economies.

Tabled by the federal government on the first day of the fall session, Bill C-30 seeks to implement the doubling of the GST credit promise over six months.

According to the government, increasing the credit limit means single Canadians without children will receive up to an extra $234; A couple with two children gets up to $467 extra; And seniors will get an extra $225 on average.

While the Conservatives have decided to join other opposition parties in supporting the legislation—what the Liberals call “targeted tax relief”—during the hearing, several MPs used their time to challenge Freeland’s economic approach.

“The only time you want to be an interested minister is when you’re asking for $2.6 billion of taxpayers’ money,” said Conservative MP and finance critic Dan Albas, who called for Freeland to come back and take part in the committee’s separate inquiry. Generally in inflation. “I think there are a lot of issues outside of the C-30 that we need to discuss,” Albas said.

Condemns conservatives in CPP/EI

A Liberal MP He used his time to talk about the Conservatives’ repeated calls for the government to scrap the planned “tax increases”—references to planned hikes to Canada Pension Plan and Employment Insurance premiums—asking Freeland why that’s a bad idea. .

“When I talk to people in my riding of Davenport (Ont.), they tell me they’re constantly worried. They’re seeing food prices going up. They’re seeing their cost of living going up in general…it’s like that. There’s no end in sight, and we’re introducing things to help with the rising cost of living. I know there are many new targeted measures, but could you take a minute or two to tell us why this continues to be important to Canadians? Contributing to the Canada Pension Plan and Employment Insurance?” asked Liberal MP Julie Djerovic.

In response, Freeland said it’s important for all members of parliament to recognize Canadians’ cost-of-living concerns before condemning the Conservatives’ current position. CPP and EI.

“In these uncertain times, I firmly believe that it is our responsibility as legislators to provide Canadians with the security that comes with knowing that your pension will be there when you retire. Work,” she said. “That’s why our government firmly believes that this is a real mistake and that doing anything to harm the integrity of these two essential programs would be a breach of our duty to Canadians.”

MPs agree to fast-track GST bill

Following Freeland’s testimony, MPs on the committee heard from officials in the Office of the Parliamentary Budget Officer and reviewed the six-page bill clause by clause. Passed without amendments.

Finance Committee Chairman Peter Fonseca is expected to re-introduce the unchanged bill to Parliament on Tuesday.

“This could be a record time,” Fonseca said before adjourning the meeting.

Just before the panel hearing, All parties agreedAs they’ve seen the bill move into its current state — once the committee completes its review, it will be fast-tracked through the final stages and sent to the Senate, which could now happen as early as midweek.

The government says around 11 million individuals and households will receive a boost from the GST rebate hike, which will provide $2.5 billion in additional funding to current recipients by the end of the year.

While promoting a rebate for low- to moderate-income Canadians wasn’t included in the Liberal-NDP deal, it’s something NDP leader Jagmeet Singh and his caucus have been pushing for months.

When Freeland was questioned about why it took so long for the government to make this proposal, NDP MP and deputy finance critic Peter Julian tried to reassure him of a specific timeframe to see the promised funds land in the bank accounts of deserving Canadians.

In response, Freeland did not provide a specific date, but noted that payments should be more consistent once Parliament gives the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) authority as the benefit is passed on to those who receive the GST rebate. Send them.

“Let me put it this way: The faster we move in committee, in the House of Commons, in the Senate, the faster the CRA can pay Canadians,” Freeland said. “I want to get these payments to Canadians quickly. Now that we all agree it’s the right thing to do, I don’t think there are any good excuses for procedural delays.”

Freeland was questioned about affordability during the hearing on the GST bill

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Freeland was questioned about affordability during the hearing on the GST bill

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Freeland was questioned about affordability during the hearing on the GST bill

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