OTTAWA, April 8, 2015 /CNW/ - The Honourable Pierre Poilievre, Minister of Employment and Social Development, today addressed the National Capital Heavy Construction Association and highlighted the Government's role in skills training and ensuring Canadians have the skills they need for in-demand jobs.
Minister Poilievre discussed the growing economic potential in Ontario, primarily as a result of exports, and how the free trade agreements put in place by the Government since 2006 have laid the groundwork for greater opportunity. He also noted the many major infrastructure projects coming on stream across the National Capital Region, many which have received support through the New Building Canada Plan—the Government's unprecedented investment in infrastructure. Minister Poilievre outlined several recent initiatives that benefit both employers and workers, such as the Canada Job Grant and the Canada Apprentice Loan.
He also took the opportunity to highlight how strong families and good jobs go hand in hand, sharing important information about the Harper Government's Family Tax Cuts and Benefits. To help hard-working families, the Government is also enhancing the Universal Child Care Benefit, introducing the Family Tax Cut and making improvements to the Child Care Expense Deduction and the Children's Fitness Tax Credit.
- Economic Action Plan 2014 created the Canada Apprentice Loan to provide apprentices registered in a Red Seal trade apprenticeship with access to interest-free loans of up to $4,000 per period of technical training. The loans are interest-free until apprentices complete or leave their apprenticeship training program, up to a maximum of six years.
- At least 26,000 apprentices are expected to benefit from over $100 million in interest-free loans each year. Since its launch on January 2, 2015, over 4,800 apprentices across Canada, including nearly 800 in Ontario, have already received their loans.
- Since 2006, the Government has provided over 530,000 apprenticeship grants to Canadians across the country.
- The Canada Job Grant will provide up to $15,000 per person for the direct costs of training, such as tuition and training materials, which includes up to $10,000 in federal government contributions.
- The Government has increased the number of countries with which Canada has free trade agreements, from 5 in 2006 to 44 today.
- The Universal Child Care Benefit would increase to as much as $1,920 per year for children under the age of 6, and parents may receive a benefit of up to $720 per year for each eligible child aged 6 through 17.
- The Family Tax Cut will eliminate or significantly reduce the difference in the federal tax payable by a one-earner couple relative to a two-earner couple with a similar family income.
"Our Government is investing in skills training so we have the right labour force in place to support our long-term commitment to building and maintaining world-class infrastructure projects. Many of these are in the National Capital Region and will create jobs and improve the quality of life of those in the community. Supporting strong families and preparing Canadians for jobs go hand in hand. That's why we are also keeping taxes low and increasing benefits, so all Canadians can keep more of their hard-earned money in their pockets."
– The Honourable Pierre Poilievre, Minister of Employment and Social Development, Minister for the National Capital Commission and Member of Parliament for Nepean–Carleton
"I am encouraged and delighted with the broad range of transformational construction projects underway that will result in a greater National Capital for all Canadians."
– Dr. Mark Kristmanson, CEO of the National Capital Commission
"We are pleased that Minister Poilievre accepted the invitation to be our key note speaker. Our members appreciated what the Minister had to say about federal infrastructure investment in the National Capital area."
– Ivan Levac, President of the National Capital Heavy Construction Association
Since 2006, our Government has recognized the importance of apprentices to Canada's economy and has made significant investments to help them and the employers that hire them.
The Canada Apprentice Loan offers interest-free loans of up to $4,000 per period of technical training to apprentices in Red Seal trades. The loans are interest-free until recipients complete or leave their apprenticeship training program, up to a maximum of six years.
The Apprenticeship Incentive Grant and Apprenticeship Completion Grant are taxable cash grants that encourage Canadians to pursue and complete apprenticeship training in designated Red Seal trades. Apprentices could be eligible to receive up to $4,000, which can be used to pay for tuition, tools or other expenses.
Other relevant measures include:
- a tax credit to employers to encourage them to hire apprentices and a tax deduction for apprentices and tradesmen to help cover the cost of new tools;
- the Flexibility and Innovation in Apprenticeship Technical Training pilot project, an initiative of Economic Action Plan 2014, to help apprentices continue working and earning while fulfilling the technical training requirements of their study program; and
- harmonizing training, certification and standards in the Atlantic provinces, leading to increased availability of training, higher apprenticeship completion rates and more labour mobility for apprentices across Atlantic Canada.
Canada Job Grant
Part of the Canada Job Fund, the Canada Job Grant is an innovative, employer-driven approach to help Canadians gain the skills and training they need to fill available jobs. It can provide up to $15,000 per person for training costs, such as tuition and training materials, which includes up to $10,000 in government contributions. Employers are required to contribute one-third of these training costs.
Helping families prosper
The Government of Canada has proposed new measures to make life more affordable for Canadian families.
Once fully implemented, the new family package would mean more money in the pockets of Canadian families. The proposed credits and benefits include the following:
- The Family Tax Cut is a non-refundable credit of up to $2,000 for couples with children under the age of 18, and takes effect starting with the 2014 tax year.
- The Children's Fitness Tax Credit may be claimed by families whose children participated in an eligible program of physical activity in 2014. Families may be able to claim up to $1,000 per child for the cost of the program. If the child is eligible for the disability tax credit and the program costs at least $100 in registration or membership fees, families can claim an additional $500.
- The Universal Child Care Benefit would increase to $160 per month for children under the age of 6, and parents may receive a benefit of $60 per month for each eligible child aged 6 through 17. The new benefit amounts would take effect on January 1, 2015, and would begin to be reflected in monthly payments to recipients in July 2015.
- The limits used to calculate the Child Care Expenses Deduction would increase by $1,000 starting in the 2015 tax year: from $7,000 to $8,000 for children under the age of 7; from $4,000 to $5,000 for children aged 7 through 16; and from $10,000 to $11,000 for children who are eligible for the Disability Tax Credit.
SOURCE Employment and Social Development Canada
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