To assist parliamentarians in their budgetary deliberations, this report highlights key issues arising from Budget 2022.
Minimum sentences require judges to impose a minimum penalty on persons convicted of a specific crime. Minimum sentences can result in judges issuing longer sentences. The issuance of longer sentences results in more inmates in federal custody which, in turn, increases the costs incurred by the Correctional Service of Canada (CSC).
This report focuses on the minimum sentence for “Possession of a prohibited or restricted firearm with ammunition”. Persons convicted of “Possession of a prohibited or restricted firearm with ammunition” in each year continue to be sentenced to a total of 1,162 more years in federal custody than they were before the minimum was increased. The total cost associated with the additional 684 persons in custody and 467 persons on parole at a given point in time as a result of this minimum sentence is estimated to be $98 million/year. The effect of this minimum sentence persists despite the minimum sentence having been declared null and void by the courts.
It is difficult to draw conclusions about the impact of other minimum sentences. It is also unclear, what effect, if any, the repeal of a minimum sentence would have on the severity of sentencing.
This report compares Canada’s tax administration performance with that of comparable countries with a set of indicators derived from the International survey on Revenue Administration (ISORA) 2020. ISORA is administered every two years, collecting data on the previous two fiscal years from over 150 national or federal tax administrations around the globe.
This report provides a distributional analysis of federal carbon pricing under the Government’s A Healthy Environment and A Healthy Economy plan.
This report analyses Department of National Defence planned capital spending under Strong, Secure, Engaged, announced in 2017, as of 2022.
This report examines the federal government’s Expenditure Plan and Main Estimates for 2022-23, which supports the first two appropriation bills that seek Parliament’s approval of $190.3 billion in budgetary authorities.
This report provides a baseline projection to help parliamentarians gauge potential economic and fiscal outcomes under current policy settings.
This report presents a detailed analysis of the Government’s third Supplementary Estimates for the 2021-22 fiscal year, which seeks Parliament’s approval of $13.2 billion.
This report provides an assessment of house prices relative to a household’s capacity to borrow and pay for the purchase of a house in selected Canadian cities.
This report provides an estimated cost of the provincial and territorial aspects of the federal national child care plan announced in Budget 2021.
The PBO estimates that First Home Savings Accounts will reduce Personal Income Tax revenue by approximately $0.8 billion each year of operation.
Bill C-19, the Budget Implement Act, proposed to introduce a Labour Mobility Deduction which would provide tax recognition of up to $4,000 per year in eligible travel and temporary relocation expenses to eligible tradespersons and apprentices. The PBO estimates that it will cost $103 million in 2022-2023 to allow tradespersons and indentured apprentices to deduct costs from travelling when employed in a construction activity at a job site that is located at least 150 kilometers from their ordinary place of residence.
Bill C-222 proposes to allow tradespersons and indentured apprentices to deduct, for income tax purposes, the costs associated with travelling when employed in a construction activity at a job site that is located at least 80 kilometers away from their ordinary place of residence. This act is to apply to the 2022 tax year and any subsequent taxation years.
The PBO estimates that it will cost $117 million in 2022-2023 to allow tradespersons and indentured apprentices to deduct costs from travelling when employed in a construction activity at a job site that is located at least 80 kilometers from their ordinary place of residence.
Private member’s bill C-255 proposes amending the *Income Tax Act* and the *Canada Student Financial Assistance Act* so that students enrolled in a designated post-secondary educational institution with a Disability Tax Credit (DTC) certificate will receive a grant equal to their annual tuition fees. It is assumed that the bill will be effective August 1, 2022, the start of the 2022-23 loan year.
The PBO estimates the proposed tuition grant for persons with a Disability Tax Credit certificate will generate a 5-year total cost of $402 million. This includes a gross cost of $591 million and a cost recovery of $189 million.
Bill C-215 proposes to increase the maximum number of weeks for employment insurance sickness benefits due to a prescribed illness, injury, or quarantine to 52 weeks from 15 weeks.
The extension is assumed to come into effect in summer 2022.
The PBO estimates the net cost of the proposal to be $1,092 million in 2022-2023 which grows to $1,932 million in 2026-2027.
A parliamentarian requested that the Parliamentary Budget Office prepare a cost estimate of Bill S-202: An Act to amend the Parliament of Canada Act (Parliamentary Visual Artist Laureate). The bill would establish the position of the Parliamentary Visual Artist Laureate. The mandate and administrative structure is intended to be analogous to the existing Parliamentary Poet Laureate (PPL).
The PBO estimates the annual ongoing fiscal impact to be $0.1 million per annum.
The proposed measure increases the tax credit for volunteer firefighters and search and rescue volunteers to $10,000 from $3,000 for individuals that have completed 200 hours of volunteer service in a calendar year. The measure applies to the 2022 and subsequent taxation years.
The PBO estimates that the proposed measure will generate a 5-year cost of $171 million.
The Canada Worker Lockdown Benefit (CWLB) provides a taxable benefit of $300 per week to workers whose weekly income is at least 50% decreased compared to the previous year’s average due to a government-imposed COVID-19 lockdown. The worker must be in an area that is designated as a lockdown region for the week of application. Workers must have earned at least $5,000 in any of 2020, 2021 or the 12 months before their benefit claim. While receiving the CWLB, workers must not simultaneously be receiving employer-paid leave or certain other types of government benefits (such as the Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit or Employment Insurance).
For the period of December 19, 2021 to March 12, 2022, the definition of “lockdown” for the purposes of the CWLB was expanded by the federal government. This costing will only focus on the period during which the expanded lockdown definition is in effect.
Eligible workers can currently retroactively apply to the CWLB up to October 24, 2021, for which the original lockdown definition applies. However, only a very small number of workers resided in regions that met the original lockdown criteria from October 24 to December 18, 2021. Due to the small number of potential claimants and data limitations, the PBO did not calculate the cost of the CWLB before December 19, 2021.
The PBO estimates that the total net cost of this measure will be $248 million. This includes a gross cost of $266 million and a cost recovery of $18 million.
The local lockdown program provides increased support under the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) and Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy (CERS) programs for businesses whose activities are restricted by public health measures. As enacted in Bill C-2, the increased subsidy rates were applicable to businesses whose activities stopped due to a public health restriction that accounted for more than 25% of baseline revenues.
A proposed Order in Council expands this measure between 19 December 2021 and 12 March 2022. Specifically, the measure is extended to all businesses with any location whose capacity has been reduced by 50% or more due to a public health measure, and whose activities restricted by the public health order account for at least 50% of the entity’s total qualifying baseline revenues. For this period, the threshold to qualify for the CEWS and CERS is revised to a 25% revenue reduction and subsidies are increased to be proportional to revenue declines up to a maximum of 75%. This costing focuses only on the period during which the expanded lockdown eligibility is in effect.
We expect the Local Lockdown Program to cost an additional $885 million in subsidies under the CEWS and an additional $338 million under the CERS programs. This represents a net cost to the federal government of $1,058 million after accounting for incremental corporate income tax revenues.
Making the existing Disability Tax Credit (DTC) refundable within the meaning of the Income Tax Act. The applicable 2021 credit for adults is $8,662, with an additional $5,053 supplement for those under 18.