SARM Comments on the 2018 Federal Budget

For Immediate Release

SARM Comments on the 2018 Federal Budget The Saskatchewan Association of Rural Municipalities (SARM) has reviewed the federal government’s 2018 budget. Last fall SARM lobbied on behalf of rural farmers, ranchers, and small business owners urging the federal government to reconsider proposed changes to the taxation of private corporations. The federal government committed that it would ensure that passive investments already made by private corporations’ owners are protected. Going forward, a $50,000 threshold on passive income in a year will be available to provide more flexibility for business owners to hold savings for multiple purposes. SARM is eager to learn more about the $100 million investment into the Strategic Innovation Fund as is it has a focus on supporting projects that relate to next generation rural broadband.  Although SARM appreciates further investment and research into connectivity technology, it is unfortunate there was not a significant funding pool for further improvements to rural infrastructure. The budget proposes $1.3 billion over five years to conserve land, waterways, wildlife and protect species at risk. SARM is hopeful that rural landowners and farmers, who are already good stewards of their land, will be able to access the fund to help conserve species at risk. SARM is pleased to see the $80 million in training for RCMP cadets and hopes there is consideration given to the deployment of trained officers into rural Saskatchewan. SARM recently offered its support for a Private Member’s motion recommending that the House of Commons Standing Committee on Public Safety and National Security undertake a study on rural crime in Canada. “Rural crime and policing has long been a concern for Saskatchewan’s rural municipalities,” said SARM President Ray Orb. “We would have liked to have seen such an initiative included in the budget.” “While there are some positive things in the 2018 budget, SARM is somewhat disappointed,” commented Orb. “The budget is lacklustre for the agriculture sector and we remain opposed to the federal government imposing a carbon tax on the province and the negative impacts it will have in rural Saskatchewan.” – 30 -For more information please contact:Jay MeyerExecutive Director(306) 761-3721 “SARM, the Voice of Rural Saskatchewan”