Supporting Canadian journalism
A strong and independent Canadian news industry is crucial to a well-functioning democracy. In recognition of the important role the news industry plays in helping citizens make informed decisions about important issues, the Government introduced three new tax measures for designated qualified Canadian journalism organizations (QCJOs) in Budget 2019:
- the Canadian journalism labour tax credit, a 25% refundable tax credit on salaries or wages payable in respect of an eligible newsroom employee for periods beginning on or after January 1, 2019;
- the digital news subscription tax credit, a 15% non-refundable personal income tax credit for qualifying digital news subscriptions paid by an individual to a QCJO, after 2019 and before 2025; and
- a new type of qualified donee called a registered journalism organization for not-for-profit journalism organizations, which is in effect as of January 1, 2020.
Budget 2019 also announced the creation of the Journalism and Written Media Independent Panel of Experts (the Panel) to provide recommendations on the new legislation supporting Canadian journalism. The Panel delivered its report to the Minister of Canadian Heritage and Multiculturalism and the Minister of Finance on July 16, 2019.
In March 2020, the Government announced the establishment of the Independent Advisory Board on Eligibility for Journalism Tax Measures for the purposes of making recommendations on organizations applying for QCJO designation. The Advisory Board is mandated to make recommendations with respect to whether an organization meets certain criteria for QCJO designation.
On April 17, 2020, the Department of Finance issued a News Release and draft legislation announcing that changes would be made to the tax measures that support journalism. On June 29, 2021 the legislation received Royal Assent.
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