Québec, March 17, 2016 – Equity, social justice and solidarity are fundamental values of Québec society and they are at the heart of government action. In this context, the Québec Economic Plan proposes several measures to, in particular, reduce the tax burden of individuals, support families and the most vulnerable and encourage labour market participation.
As of the end of next year, the 4.5 million Québec taxpayers subject to the health contribution will be fully exempt, representing an easing of the tax burden of $759 million a year, at term.
Taking into account the measures of this economic plan and those announced last year, Quebecers will enjoy a nearly $-billion reduction in the tax burden over five years. In addition, we are implementing numerous measures totalling over $186 million to address the needs of families and the most vulnerable in all regions of Québec.
– Carlos Leitão
A significant initiative to help families
To support families, in addition to eliminating the health contribution, the government is announcing a 50% reduction in the additional contribution for a second child in subsidized childcare. This reduction is retroactive and thus applies for 2015.
For 2015 alone, this measure represents a $14-million reduction in the contribution for nearly 30 000 families in Québec.
Implementation of new strategies
The Québec Economic Plan also confirms the funding needed to implement two important strategies drawn up by the government in recent months. For 2016-2017, the government strategy for the equality of women and men and the government strategy to prevent and counter sexual violence will receive nearly $5 million.
Strengthening support for the most vulnerable
To support households living in particularly vulnerable situations, the government is announcing in its economic plan an investment of $128 million for the construction of 1 500 new affordable, social and community housing units. This additional funding strengthens the support measures announced last year, in particular enhancement of the Rent Supplement program to provide housing assistance to 5 800 families.
The Economic Plan also provides for a financial contribution of $12 million over the next five years to address certain needs of Aboriginals, particularly urban Aboriginals.
Measures to meet labour market needs
The latest demographic forecasts already point to a decrease in the potential labour pool over the next few years in Québec. In this context, the Québec Economic Plan provides for initiatives totaling more than $310 million over five years to boost labour market participation.
The measures provided for aim, in particular, to value work effort, promote job retention and develop the employability of individuals who are able to work by:
- increasing the work premiums for households without children ($209.5 million);
- enhancing the tax shield ($43 million);
- promoting the labour market participation of experienced workers ($39.6 million);
- fostering participation in the Objectif emploi program ($10.4 million).
By completely eliminating the health contribution as of next year, our government is following through on its commitment and enabling Québec families to reap the first benefits of the implementation of our plan.
– Carlos Leitão