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CHAMBER CHATTER: Sooke chamber urges Ottawa to prioritize small businesses in carbon tax policies

Calls for relief and prompt rebate returns amid economic uncertainties
The recent carbon tax hike intensifies the challenges small businesses face, according to the Sooke Region Chamber of Commerce. (Unsplash)

As executive director of the Sooke Region Chamber of Commerce, I must address the concerns raised by Dan Kelly, president of the Canadian Federation of Independent Business, regarding the impact of carbon taxes on small businesses.

The recent hike in carbon taxes intensifies the challenges faced by small firms, leading to price increases, wage freezes, and reduced ability to invest in environmental initiatives to absorb the tax.

Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland’s acknowledgment of the overdue carbon tax rebates owed to small businesses since 2019 brings hope. However, Ottawa needs to take concrete action to address the concerns voiced by small business owners.

The chamber urges the government to prioritize small businesses’ needs in its carbon tax policies and ensure they do not unfairly burden them. Furthermore, Ottawa must commit to promptly returning carbon tax rebates to small firms.

The freezing of the impending tax hike is a crucial step towards providing relief to small businesses already grappling with challenges compounded by the ongoing economic uncertainties.

By working together, we can develop policies that balance environmental responsibility and support small business vitality. Let’s continue to engage in constructive dialogue and advocate for policies promoting growth, fairness, and sustainability


Deb Schenk is the executive director of the Sooke Region Chamber of Commerce. Email