Following the presentation of the 2020-2021 Portrait of Quebec Economic and Financial situation, the Leader of the Official Opposition, Ms. Dominique Anglade, is concerned and astounded that the Government of Quebec is banking on an optimistic 6% growth rate, which even surpasses the forecasts made by the largest financial institutions, despite the worst case deficit scenario of 15 billion dollars is becoming a reality. Ms. Anglade is also disappointed by the absence of the 1-billion-dollar plan to save our SMEs which she had requested.
Yesterday we presented our expectations in anticipation of the Portrait of Quebec’s 2020-2021 Economic and Financial Situation and today we once again observe a lack of specific support measures for our small and medium-sized businesses in the constriction and restaurant industries. We are also concerned that the government is watching its worst-case scenario become a reality, but is nonetheless banking on the best-case scenario when it comes to growth. Thankfully, the Quebec Liberal Party left historic financial leeway which has allowed the government to limit COVID-19-related effects on our public finances.
-Dominique Anglade, Leader of the Official Opposition
The demands made yesterday to the Minister of Finance:
- Support access to digital technologies among businesses, especially SMEs;
- Help commercial and residential buildings that still run on natural gas and oil convert to electricity;
- Encourage economic recovery by supporting vulnerable businesses and establishing an Economic Recovery Fund which would support restaurateurs and leaseholders who have been hit especially hard by the current health crisis;
- Regroup all of the programs, subsidies and investments earmarked for climate transition as well as economic and environmental development into a “Climate Bank” that will coordinate initiatives for the transition towards a carbon neutral economic at an arm’s length from the government;
- Encourage remote working with the understanding that accelerating spending for companies encouraging remote working will prove very expensive for companies, and possibly employees, as they acquire the necessary equipment;
- Evaluate the financial impact of allowing restaurateurs to keep the equivalent of the QST they have collected;
- Stimulate private renovation expenses through developing a program of “deep renovation” which prioritizes the renovation of low-income residential buildings;
- Establish an IMMOVERT program by encouraging eco-energy renovation expenses among homeowners and residential rental building owners and support commercial buildings upgrades- owners will make significant investments in their efforts to adapt their buildings within the context of COVID-19. They could include redesigning and purchasing equipment to improve buildings’ energy consumption and air quality;
- Create a 20% tax credit for all renovation work undertaken by owner occupants and rental building owners, and enhance this credit to 30% when the renovation work is aimed at energy efficiency;
- Look at implementing a refundable tax credit inspired by a measure dealing with investment and innovation (C3i) for commercial building owners;
- Allow accelerated amortization for certain expenses generated by owners of rental properties;
- Prevent the eviction of small businesses that are no longer able to afford the cost of their rental space.