B.C.’s Chambers vote for energy reform, a new take on Property Transfer Tax, and oversight of product stewardship organizations
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Vancouver, May 24, 2014 – Business leaders from across B.C. have passed policies calling for energy policy reform, a new take on Property Transfer Tax and better oversight of product stewardship (recycling) organizations such as Multi Material BC.
These policies were passed at the BC Chamber Annual General Meeting & Conference, the province’s foremost business gathering, held this year in Richmond May 23-24.
This unique grassroots policy-building forum brings together approximately 200 Chamber delegates from across B.C. to vote on new business/economic policies. Policies that are adopted become part of the BC Chamber’s advocacy agenda. This year, delegates are voting on nearly 50 proposed policies. Delegates voted on 26 policies yesterday (May 23); voting continues this afternoon.
Policies voted into force so far include:
- Optimizing the Clean Energy Act for B.C.’s Economy and Environmental Policy Direction
- Reconciling B.C.’s Natural Gas Economic Development Policy with its Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reduction Policy
- The Importance to the Economy of Expanded Oil Pipeline Infrastructure
- Property Transfer Tax Reform; Affordable Housing is Good for the Economy
- Ensuring Affordable Product Stewardship Programs
Draft versions of these proposed policies are available on the BC Chamber website here; please note that these may not be identical to the versions passed, due to edits made on the floor.
Quotes from John Winter, president and CEO, BC Chamber of Commerce:
On the BC Chamber policy process:
“Our policy development process canvasses the best and brightest ideas from business leaders right across B.C. Once again this year, this unique grassroots process has delivered some excellent policy recommendations to help enhance B.C. as a business jurisdiction.”
On energy resolutions:
“Energy policy is paramount in B.C. Our Chambers are calling for some changes to current policy to, among other things, reconcile B.C.’s ambitious economic policy on files such as LNG with our current greenhouse gas reduction policy.”
On the Property Transfer Tax resolution:
“Affordable housing is an important part of a strong economy but a continuing challenge in B.C., particularly in the Lower Mainland. B.C.’s Chambers are proposing some additional relief from Property Transfer Tax for B.C.’s new home buyers, while offsetting this lost revenue by raising the tax for non-residents of Canada. This approach is similar to what’s been done in other real estate investment jurisdictions such as Paris, New York and Hong Kong.”
On the product stewardship resolution:
“Our membership has seen first-hand the costs that product stewardship organizations such as Multi Material BC put onto B.C. businesses. Our policy calls for better oversight of this type of organization to ensure that any costs put onto businesses are fair, clear, and manageable.”