October 29 2020
The Tourism Industry Association of Nova Scotia (TIANS) acknowledges the provincial government’s announcement for tax relief for Nova Scotia’s accommodation operators as a good first step.
“The proposed one-time tax rebate of 25% for licensed accommodations is a good first step, but not the full solution or innovation needed at this extraordinary time,” says Judy Saunders, TIANS Chair. “The provincial government needs to be working jointly with municipalities and use a data-driven approach to target relief where it is needed.”
As the Tourism Industry across our province struggles with catastrophic losses and rising costs, TIANS is encouraging a Provincial Tax Strategy that reflects the reality of the economic downturn for Nova Scotia businesses. Relief needs to be targeted to those businesses most impacted by COVID-19.
“We have never been in this situation and we need all levels of government to work collaboratively to address the immediate and long-term issues surrounding commercial property taxation. The traditional approach of assessments based on past revenues will not work,” says Saunders. “We need a broad sector approach that considers assessments, increasing mill rates, actual revenue levels, tax credits, and deferred interest programs, with a view of rebuilding our industry over the next few years.”
Commercial taxation is one of the top costs to tourism businesses in all five sectors. The ramifications of COVID-19 will be impacting revenues for years to come and tax policy must reflect the extraordinary times we are in. One of TIANS’ recommendations is in regards to the provincial loan to municipalities. TIANS is asking for the province to apply a consistent approach to the current loan program for municipalities to ensure favourable interest rates get shared with affected businesses.
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Provincial Update | October 29 2020
Nova Scotia’s hotel, motel and inn operators are getting assistance with property tax bills to help with COVID-19 recovery.
The Tourism Accommodations Real Property Tax Rebate Program will provide qualified operators a 25 per cent rebate on payment of 2020-21 commercial property tax. The program opens Nov. 16.