Chow Vows to Extend Small-Business Tax Reduction Till 2020

Toronto Mayoral candidate, Olivia Chow, has announced her support for the idea to extend annual reductions in the share of property taxes paid by small businesses. Currently, the city has planned to meet its reduction target, i.e. a small-business tax rate 2.5 times the residential rate, by in 2015. In the announcement made by Chow on Friday, she vowed to continue the reductions till “at least” 2020.

Chow’s opponent, David Soknacki, has helped in forming the reduction program under former mayor David Miller and has also alleged to continue the program until rates are competitive with the “upper band” of commercial rates in the surrounding municipalities. In addition to that plan, Chow also alleged to allow businesses to obtain licences online rather than at a single city office in East York. She vowed to launch a Toronto version of a British Columbia program that helps immigrant entrepreneurs start businesses. Speaking at the Tamil grocery Shankar & Co. in Scarborough, Chow, alleged that the incumbent Mayor Ford has done little to help businesses even though he “talks a good line.”

Commenting on Ford’s recent trip to Los Angeles, Chow alleged that Ford has “spent more time becoming a celebrity in Hollywood” than taking real action to assist struggling entrepreneurs. She stated that “(Businesses) still have to apply on paper. New immigrants trying to start their business, there’s no help for them — there’s no program, no mentorship program,” adding that “I actually have a concrete, practical plan that can be implemented immediately. “Chow complained that “It doesn’t make sense at all, in this 21st century, to still have paper applications. What do you mean you can’t register online?”

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