But what about the pantyhose?
As I struggled into my nude pantyhose on the day after the Federal Budget tabled, I wondered to myself if soon I would be able to add up the packages of control top and claim them under the $1000 new Employment Tax Credit.
This credit aims to help us employed folks recoup some of the costs associated with being employed. Pantyhose has to count – I’d never buy the stuff if I didn’t need to present a polished self each and every morning at the office.
It’s like a uniform, albeit an uncomfortable, itchy one.
In a budget marked by the unsurprising (the new 6% GST) and the unique (the $150 per year transit tax credit for monthly Skytrain and bus riders), my favourite measure has to be the employment credit.
Well, that and the Fitness Tax Credit, which helps defray the soccer league fees for my rather active preschooler.
The three highest profile items won’t have a big impact on my family.
I’m sure you recall that my moans about coordinating a bus schedule with two separate school drop-offs and, fortunately, my income means most of my child care allowance for my youngest will go back to the government.
And, finally, we’re not big consumer spenders, so the GST reduction won’t make a huge difference day to day.
But that’s how this budget seems to slice. There is something for almost everyone in the form of direct tax relief.
In a stark contrast to the previous Liberal budget, this Conservative one has decided that instead of building new monumental programs for bureaucrats in Ottawa to administer, that it would be better to hand us back our hard-earned dollars.
Altogether there are 28 tax reductions and one tax increase.
While not pleasant, the tax increase raises the amount we pay on our first $38,000 of income to 15.5% from the 15% brought in last year by the election-hungry Liberals.
However, in a smart move for low income Canadians, the Conservative budget also increases the basic personal amount to $10,000 by 2009. A single parent with a child would have to pay no tax, therefore, on her first $17,000 of income, once the dependent amount is included.
Add in a provincially subsidized daycare spot, a GST cut, tax credits for sport activities and transit passes, and that $1200 a year child care allowance is suddenly making a big difference in the life of a struggling family.
Tradespeople also are getting a credit to help out with purchase of tools and equipment.
Which, after thoughtful consideration, is probably more important than my never-ending pantyhose purchases.
But on behalf of all nylon-bound women everywhere, I’m still going to file for it!
As seen today in 24 Hours