Charlottetown, PE (March 14, 2023) – Today, the Greater Charlottetown Area Chamber of Commerce released its priorities to all political parties. Its recommendations focus on reduced personal taxes for workers, and strategies to deal with the ongoing labour shortage in the province.
Within the recommendations is a call on the government to reduce the personal tax amount on the Island’s lowest income earners. PEI currently taxes its lowest-income earners at the highest rate in Atlantic Canada.
Additionally, every province, besides PEI and Nova Scotia, currently indexes income tax to the rate of inflation. This means pay raises that only keep up with the cost of living bump taxpayers into a higher bracket, and the government is taking more of their wages, resulting in very little to no real increase in take home income.
“This is why we need to not only increase wages. Governments need to do their part in making sure Islanders have a livable income,” commented Bill DeBlois, President of the Greater Charlottetown Chamber of Commerce. “This means reducing the amount of personal taxes charged and letting Islanders keep more of the wages they earn in their pockets.”
The policy document released today also includes recommendations for tackling labour shortages through an integrated workforce strategy and effective immigration and retention. Despite record population growth, Prince Edward Island’s job vacancy rate of 5.4% is the highest in Atlantic Canada. Changing demographics and changing workforce demands are playing a major role in this issue, with only seven young workers available for every ten retirees.
“Our membership consistently tells us that the labour shortage is one of their top priorities,” said DeBlois. “To tackle the ongoing labour shortage crisis, government needs to support all industries in creating a private sector led, Island-wide labour strategy.”
You can view the Greater Charlottetown Area Chamber of Commerce’s full policy document at www.CharlottetownChamber.com/Election2023
About the Greater Charlottetown Area Chamber of Commerce:
The Greater Charlottetown Area Chamber of Commerce connects business and community and is PEI’s largest business advocacy organization with more than 1,100 members. For more information on the Chamber, visit www.charlottetownchamber.com.
Policy and Communications Specialist
(902) 628-2000 x 224