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Federal Budget -> 2015 Liberal Party Platform

2015 Liberal Party Platform

The Liberal Party was elected with a majority government on October 19, 2015.  We've summarized much of the information from their platform, hopefully addressing most or all of the tax-related points.  See what legislative proposals have already been introduced prior to a 2016 budget.

Personal and Corporate Income Tax

 - reduce the middle income tax bracket rate from 22% to 20.5%
 - create a new income tax bracket of 33% for taxable income over $200,000 per year
 - cancel the Family Tax Cut
 - no change to pension splitting for seniors
 - cancel the education and textbook tax credits, but maintain the tuition tax credit
 - immediately reinstate in full the tax credit for contributions made to labour-sponsored funds
 - increase the residency component of the Northern Residents Deduction by 33% to a maximum of $22 per day, and index the benefit for inflation (maximum deduction of $8,000 for Northern Zone, $4,000 in Intermediate Zone)
 - introduce new Teacher and Early Childhood Educator School Supply Tax Benefit, a refundable tax credit that will apply to the purchase of up to $1,000 worth of school supplies each year, for a maximum credit of $150 per year.
 - set a cap on how much can be claimed through the stock option deduction
 - reduce the small business corporate income tax rate to 9% from 11% (already planned), ensure that Canadian-Controlled Private Corporation (CCPC) status is not used to reduce personal income tax obligations for high-income earners rather than supporting small businesses


 - modernize RRSP Home Buyers' Plan to allow Canadians impacted by sudden and significant life changes to buy a house without tax penalty
 - cancel TFSA limit increase from $5,500 to $10,000
 - retain the reduced withdrawal requirements for RRIFs

Child Benefits

 - create a new Canada Child Benefit (CCB) providing monthly tax-free benefits that are tied to income, to replace the Universal Child Care Benefit (UCCB), Canada Child Tax Benefit (CCTB) and National Child Benefit Supplement (NCBS).

Employment Insurance

 - offer a 12-month break on Employment Insurance (EI) premiums to encourage companies to hire young Canadians for permanent positions, and waive employer premiums for all those between the ages of 18 and 24 who are hired into a permanent position in 2016, 2017, or 2018
 - reduce EI premiums from $1.88 to $1.65 in 2017.    The previous estimate for the 2017 rate, as announced in the Federal 2015 budget, was 1.49%.
 - introduce more flexible parental benefits (EI)
 - make Compassionate Care Benefit (EI) more flexible and easier to access
 - reverse 2012 EI reforms that force unemployed workers to move away from their communities

Canada Pension Plan, Old Age Security and Guaranteed Income Supplement

 - enhance the Canada Pension Plan in order to increase CPP benefits
 - restore eligibility age for Old Age Security (OAS) and Guaranteed Income Supplement (GIS) to 65
 - increase GIS for single low-income seniors by 10%
 - introduce a new Seniors Price Index to ensure that OAS and GIS benefits keep up with seniors' actual rising costs


 - increase maximum Canada Student Grant for low-income students to $3,000 per year for full-time students, and to $1,800 per year for part-time students, and increase the income thresholds for eligibility
 - make student loan system more flexible to ensure that no graduate with student loans will be required to make any repayment until they are earning at least $25,000 per year.  This will be done by changing the income thresholds in the Repayment Assistance Plan for recent graduates.
 - cancel the education and textbook tax credits, but maintain the tuition tax credit


 - re-establish lifelong pensions as an option for our injured veterans, and increase the value of the disability award
 - increase the veteran survivor's pension amount from 50% to 70%, and eliminate the "marriage after 60" clawback clause
 - re-open 9 Veterans Affairs Canada offices

Other Measures

 - remove GST on new capital investments in affordable rental housing
 - restore the mandatory long-form census, which was replaced in 2011 by a voluntary National Household Survey, which covered most of the same topics as the previous long-form census.
 - require all Parliamentarians to disclose expenses in a common and detailed manner, each quarter
 - stop the plan to end door-to-door mail delivery in Canada
 - create a simple, central, no-fee website for Canadians to make requests about their own personal information held by the government.  Should a request take longer than 30 days to fulfill, government must provide a written explanation for the delay to the applicant and the Privacy Commissioner.  Assuming this will replace the current Personal Information Request Form.
 - repeal Bill C-377 (disclosure requirements for labour organizations) and Bill C-525 Employees' Voting Rights Act re unions (certification and revocation - bargaining agent)
 - review Bill C-51 Anti-terrorism Act, 2015 and introduce new legislation that better balances our collective security with our rights and freedoms
 - legalize, regulate, and restrict access to marijuana
 - reverse CBC budget cuts and invest $150 million in new annual funding for CBC/Radio-Canada
 - introduce a public safety officer compensation benefit to be paid to families of fire fighters, police officers, and paramedics killed or permanently disabled in the line of duty ($300,000 benefit)
 - restore funding for Canada's four heavy urban search and rescue teams, re-open the Maritime Rescue Sub-centre in St. John's, and the Kitsilano Coast Guard Base in Vancouver
 - in 2019/20, reduce the federal debt-to-GDP ratio to 27 percent and balance the budget
 - more, including immigration, refugees, infrastructure funding

For more information on the above, see the Liberal Party pdf publication A New Plan for a Strong Middle Class (pdf), which we downloaded from the Liberal website in 2015.

Revised: October 26, 2023


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