A report commissioned by the Atlantic Institute for Market Studies (AIMS) and written by Dr. Kevin Milligan, Associate Professor, Vancouver School of Economics, suggests the recommendations of the seven-month-old Broten Review are steps in the right direction in terms of fairness in Nova Scotia`s tax system.
According to Marco Navarro-Genie, AIMS president and CEO, AIMS took careful consideration of the Broten Report and has conducted a detailed expert analysis of the findings.
“It’s a good report that will hopefully serve as a gateway to greater economic reform,” says Navarro-Genie. ”Working with a well-known Canadian economist who really understands Canadian tax policy was important to us,” said Navarro-Genie. “We believe his recommendations provide clarity and direction on where Nova Scotia needs to go with its tax system.”
Navarro-Genie also adds that the report was peer reviewed by some of the country’s most senior tax policy experts.
Through his own five recommendations, Milligan validates much of the Broten Report highlighting such items as stronger federal investment, public service renewal, and closing the tax gap between small and large businesses.
Milligan believes the existing system picks-and-chooses some items and activities to tax heavily while others go untaxed, therefore distorting economic activity compared to an alternative that raises the same revenue by taxing all items at a lower-and-uniform rate.
“Nova Scotians deserve a tax system that strongly encourages economic activity,” says Milligan. “A fair tax system will also continue to preserve the Maritime sense of fairness that makes Nova Scotia such a desirable place to live.”
Milligan is also quick to note that while the Broten Report is grounded in good policy, it is up to the Nova Scotia government to implement the recommendations sooner rather than later.
“Nova Scotians want the same as other Canadians for their children: opportunities to work and live in a growing economy and a fair society,” concludes Milligan. “However, Nova Scotia’s workforce is shrinking while spending needs are expanding more quickly than the tax system can handle. To achieve the attainable goals of growth and fairness, Nova Scotia needs to change its ways and make a renewed commitment to serious fiscal reform.”
To view the full policy paper, An Analysis of the Tax Proposals in the Nova Scotia Tax and Regulatory Review, click here.
For more information or to arrange an interview with Dr. Milligan, please contact:
Dr. Kevin Milligan
The Atlantic Institute for Market Studies is a Canadian non-profit, non-partisan research institute that provides a distinctive Atlantic Canadian perspective on economic, political, and social issues. The Institute seeks to stimulate public debate with well-considered argument and evidence-based data. AIMS sets the benchmark on public policy by drawing together the most innovative thinking available from some of the world’s foremost experts and applying that thinking to the challenges facing Canadians.