Government of Canada introduces legislation to make life more affordable for Canadians
Legislation would double the GST Credit for six months, introduce the Canada Dental Benefit, and top-up the Canada Housing Benefit
September 20, 2022
Today, the government introduced its first two pieces of legislation for this Parliamentary sitting, which would deliver targeted support to the Canadians who need it most. These measures build on the government’s Affordability Plan, which has already been putting more money back in the pockets of the middle class and those working hard to join it this year.
Bill C-30, the Cost of Living Relief Act, No. 1 (Targeted Tax Relief), would double the Goods and Services Tax Credit for six months.
- Doubling the GST Credit would provide $2.5 billion in additional targeted support to the roughly 11 million individuals and families who already receive the tax credit, including about half of Canadian families with children and more than half of Canadian seniors. Single Canadians without children would receive up to an extra $234 and couples with two children would receive up to an extra $467 this year. Seniors would receive an extra $225 on average.
- The Canada Dental Benefit would be provided to children under 12 who do not have access to dental insurance, starting this year. Direct payments totalling up to $1,300 per child over the next two years (up to $650 per year) would be provided for dental care services. This is the first stage of the government’s plan to deliver dental coverage for families with adjusted net income under $90,000, and will allow children under 12 to receive the dental care they need while the government works to develop a comprehensive national dental care program.
- The one-time top-up to the Canada Housing Benefit would deliver a $500 payment to 1.8 million renters who are struggling with the cost of housing. This more than doubles the government’s Budget 2022 commitment, reaching twice as many Canadians as initially promised. The federal benefit will be available to applicants with an adjusted net income below $35,000 for families, or below $20,000 for individuals, who pay at least 30 per cent of their adjusted net income on rent.
The Canada Revenue Agency’s (CRA) application portals for the Canada Dental Benefit and Canada Housing Benefit will be available to Canadians following Royal Assent of Bill C-31.
The legislation tabled in Parliament today represents the latest suite of measures to support Canadians with the rising cost of living without adding fuel to the fire of inflation. The government’s Affordability Plan is delivering targeted and fiscally responsible financial support to the Canadians who need it most, with particular emphasis on addressing the needs of low-income Canadians who are most exposed to inflation.
“With the legislation we have introduced today, we are building on the supports in our government’s Affordability Plan to deliver timely, effective financial help to millions of Canadians to make ends meet. For our neighbours who need this support the most, this means more money for them this year to help make life more affordable. We will continue to strike a balance between delivering support where and when it is needed most and maintaining the discipline that has given Canada the strongest fiscal position in the G7.”
- The Honourable Randy Boissonnault, Minister of Tourism and Associate Minister of Finance
“Oral health is just as important as healthy eating and being active when it comes to preventing chronic diseases. Everyone deserves to have access to oral health care, but for many Canadians, it’s just too expensive. That’s why we introduced this legislation today that would help uninsured families with children under 12 get the dental care they need, and show off their brightest smiles, this year.”
- The Honourable Jean-Yves Duclos, Canada’s Minister of Health
“With affordability on everyone’s mind, this additional support will ease more pressure on renters across the country. In addition to federal programs to create affordable housing and provide rental supports, this one-time payment is another way our government is ensuring vulnerable families are not left behind. These are the kinds of measures our government is putting into action right now to tackle the housing crisis.”
- The Honourable Ahmed Hussen, Minister of Housing and Diversity and Inclusion
“During the pandemic, when Canadians needed support, the CRA rose to the occasion. It will do so again by ensuring that eligible Canadians can apply for benefits in a simple and secure way. Our government will ensure that Canadians can get the support and dental care they need.”
- The Honourable Diane Lebouthillier, Canada’s Minister of National Revenue
“The federal government is committed to supporting children and parents now, and for generations to come. From dental care to increasing access to early learning and child care, we will continue to ensure that every child has the best possible start in life, while making life more affordable for families in Canada.”
- The Honourable Karina Gould, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development
These measures total more than $4.5 billion in targeted support for the Canadians who need it most, of which $3.1 billion is in addition to funding previously allocated in Budget 2022.
The pieces of legislation introduced today are in addition to other measures that will support Canadians this year, including:
- Enhancing the Canada Workers Benefit at a cost of $1.7 billion in new support for an estimated three million low-income workers this year, with a couple receiving up to $2,400 more this year, and single workers receiving up to $1,200 more. Most recipients first received this additional support through their 2021 tax refund.
- Cutting regulated child care fees in half on average for families in Canada by the end of this year.
- A 10 per cent increase to the Old Age Security (OAS) pension for seniors 75 years and older, which began in July 2022, and will provide more than $800 in new support to full pensioners over the first year, and increase benefits for more than three million seniors.
- Providing more support for students by doubling the Canada Student Grant amount until July 2023 and by waiving interest on Canada Student Loans through to March 2023.
Examples of how the government is making life more affordable for Canadians this year:
- A couple in Ontario with an income of $45,000 and a child in daycare could receive about an additional $7,800 above their existing benefits this fiscal year.
- A single recent graduate, living in Alberta, with an entry-level job and an income of $24,000 could receive an approximate additional $1,300 in new and enhanced benefits.
- A senior with a disability in Quebec could benefit from over $2,500 more this year than she received last year.
This is the first step, outlined in the Supply and Confidence Agreement, to develop a national dental care program. The Government of Canada aims to have that program started for those under 18, persons with disabilities, and seniors by the end of 2023, with the full program completed by 2025.
Canada has the lowest total government deficit in the G7 this year, and by far the lowest net debt burden among these countries (32.1 per cent of GDP versus an average of 97.5 per cent of GDP for the group as a whole).
The International Monetary Fund and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development predict that the Canadian economy will see the strongest growth in the G7 this year and next.
- Backgrounder: Making Life More Affordable: Doubling the Goods and Services Tax Credit for Six Months
- Backgrounder: Making Dental Care More Affordable: The Canada Dental Benefit
- Backgrounder: Making Housing More Affordable: One-time top-up to the Canada Housing Benefit program
- Making life more affordable for Canadians this year | Prime Minister of Canada
- Affordability Plan
- Deputy Prime Minister outlines government’s Affordability Plan for Canadians
- Budget 2022 - A Plan to Grow Our Economy and Make Life More Affordable
- Explanatory Notes Relating to Amendments to the Income Tax Act, Excise Tax Act and the Excise Act, 2001
Media may contact:
Office of the Minister of Tourism and Associate Minister of Finance
Office of the Honourable Jean-Yves Duclos
Minister of Health
Office of the Minister of Housing and Diversity and Inclusion
Office of the Minister of National Revenue
Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation
Canada Revenue Agency
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