KAP News & Media

KAP News and Media

News Releases


January 28, 2016

Budget holds little for farmers: KAP

Keystone Agricultural Producers president Doug Chorney says there is not much positive news in yesterday’s budget for primary producers and rural Manitobans.

“The PST increase is the big buzz, and this will hurt us as consumers,” said Chorney. “What also concerns me is that the money from this increase will be rolled into the Building Canada Plan and will go into major provincial projects – instead of into municipal hands to address local infrastructure issues.”   

Another – and continuing – concern for KAP is the provincial education tax. Farmers have traditionally been taxed on all farm property, although in recent years the Province has acknowledged this taxation was unfair by implementing a rebate program.

“The rebate is at 80 per cent, and we had been told that it would go right up to 100 per cent – but there has been no increase since the 2011 election, “Chorney explained.

“The fact that the Province, in yesterday’s budget, felt the need to also provide seniors with an education tax rebate tells me that the current model of taxation for funding education is flawed,” he said. “It has to be done fairly – and based on your ability to pay.

“For farmers, it’s unfair that we are carrying an undue burden because we are taxed on land and buildings that we need for our farm businesses.”

Chorney also noted that the newly announced cap on the rebate to farmers will affect some producers negatively.

He also commented on the cut to the agricultural budget – including closing of offices and consolidation of services.

“In the realities of today’s smartphones and internet technology, we can look at how those services are delivered – and I think farmers can make changes accordingly,” he noted.

On another budget announcement, Chorney said he is pleased funding has been increase for the STARS air ambulance.

“This important service has saved the lives of rural Manitobans – and now it will be available seven days a week, 24 hours a day.”

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For more information, please contact:
Doug Chorney, president: 204-785-3626
Val Ominski, communications co-ordinator: 204-697-1140

Keystone Agricultural Producers is Manitoba’s largest general farm policy organization, representing over 7,000 farm families and 21 commodity groups throughout the province. Our strength is our democratic structure, and our mission is to represent and promote the interests of the province’s farm families.