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Thursday, May 04, 2006

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

6 Comments:

At 12:50 PM, Anonymous Sean P., Vancouver-Quadra said...

ERin,
If the Tories are so concerned about the middle and lower classes, why create all of these tax credits? Why not lower the tax rates, rather than make credits? It's going to take a lot more paper work to do our taxes now.....

...Why did Flaherty increase taxes from 15% to 15.5%? How is that going to benefit the poor?

The Liberals could easily defeat Harper on this budget, especially on that tax increase, the elimination of a national child care program, and our pledges to both the Kyoto and Kelowna Accords.

This budget is very political and unrealistic. This type of budget should be defeated, but whether or not it will, is another question.

The people of Vancouver-Quadra will not vote Conservative, and neither will most of the country, if Harper wants to run on this budget...

...That said, good luck with your panty-hose :-)

 
At 10:15 PM, Blogger Jarrett said...

Sean,

How is the reduction of taxes going to help those poorest of Canadians who are exempt from taxes?

Speaking of which, general exmptions were raised by the Tories.

 
At 5:43 AM, Anonymous Sean P. Vancouver-Quadra said...

It's a good thing to have raised general exemptions.....But it would have been far better to have lowered the overall tax rate.

The Flaherty budget is as knee-jerk as the Toews Criminal Law reform bills...The budget is strictly political and uneconomical, and Toews' proposals to crack down on judges will not help ease criminal activities!

...Don't worry, as it's only a few months until Canadians return their rightful government back to power.

Take care.

 
At 12:09 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Re, $1200 child care bonus.

A single female-headed household
is not a family.
It is a broken home,
a broken family.

Bernie

 
At 12:17 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

And speaking of comments - please do leave them - even if it's a quick jot to tell me that you think I'm way off course and horribly misguided (don't worry about hurting my feelings, my dad says it all the time).
-----------------------------

Erin,

What is the meaning of having
your hands clasped together
in your photo?
Or is there no meaning at all?

I was thinking that it means she thinks
of herself as a compassionate person, a follower of Buddhism
or the Dalai Lama, or just
a particularly Holy person.

Bernie

 
At 9:11 PM, Blogger YVRpilot said...

Bernie,
I think you might just be reading a little too hard into Erin's pose. I found something on the internet that might get rid of your obvious confusion.

__________________________________

Offering Presence. Palms together, in the traditional gesture of prayer. Can be used as a non-verbal greeting, in order to frame our verbal communication within a larger context. This gesture is also used to convey the message that "I have full attention to offer,"

 

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