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A recent Telus Health comparison of a drug’s cost effectiveness when calculated from the private versus the public-payer perspective demonstrated clearly that the private-payer perspective matters when assessing the value of a medication, explained Dr Nina Lathia, pharmacist, and health economist, at Benefits Canada’s Face to Face Drug Plan Management Forum on Dec. 9, 2020. […]

Ontario’s 2020 budget highlights employer health tax, pension reviews

In its 2020 budget on Thursday, the Ontario government said it plans to permanently extend the employer health tax payroll exemption from $490,000 to $1 million. The change is expected to save Ontario employers about $360 million in 2021/22 as they endure the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic. “When the COVID-19 outbreak struck Ontario, the […]

  • By: Staff
  • November 6, 2020 January 19, 2021
  • 08:45

The Bank of Canada’s latest review of business and consumer expectations has revealed how widespread uncertainty is muting rehiring and purchasing plans, published days before a federal update gives the Liberals’ outlook for the economy. The central bank’s business outlook survey suggested about half of firms foresee a rebound in their sales within the next […]

Federal government halting changes to employee stock options

The federal government is putting a pin in its changes to employee stock options, which were supposed to take effect on Jan. 1. In a news release, the federal finance ministry said it’s reviewing feedback from consultations on the proposed changes and will announce its path forward and a new implementation date in its 2020 budget. The proposed changes, […]

  • By: Staff
  • December 20, 2019 November 12, 2020
  • 15:30

The Alberta Teachers’ Retirement Fund Board will transfer all of its funds to the Alberta Investment Management Corp. for management, according to the province’s latest budget. The ATRF board, which administers pensions for all teachers in Alberta school jurisdictions and charter schools, said in a press release it was only made aware of the change […]

Budget’s stock options proposals could have consequences for employers

The federal government’s 2019 budget proposed changes that could affect the viability and attractiveness of stock options as a recruitment and retention tool for certain employers even as it gives these employers a tax break for shares issued pursuant to these options. On the one hand, the budget proposed imposing an annual cap of $200,000 […]

Incorrect pension accounting significantly understates Ontario deficits: auditor general

As Ontarians prepare for the upcoming provincial election campaign, the province’s auditor general is raising the stakes in her dispute with the government about its accounting treatment of two of its biggest public pension plans. On Wednesday, auditor general Bonnie Lysyk released her report into the government’s budget projections ahead of the June election. In […]

  • By: Staff
  • April 26, 2018 September 13, 2019
  • 09:49
Budget includes end to health and welfare trusts by 2021

The federal budget has proposed the end of health and welfare trusts, suggesting either a conversion to employee life and health trusts or a windup by the end of 2020. While the government added rules in regards to employee life and health trusts to the Income Tax Act in 2010, the Canada Revenue Agency has been providing administrative positions about […]

  • By: Ryan Murphy
  • February 28, 2018 September 13, 2019
  • 16:30
Budget offers details on new five-week leave for second parent

In its 2018 budget on Tuesday, the federal government confirmed it would introduce a new five-week incentive for second parents to take parental leave. The use-it-or-lose-it employment insurance parental sharing benefit, which will take effect in June 2019, will be available to eligible two-parent families, including adoptive and same-sex couples, to take at any point following the arrival of […]

Budget confirms new advisory council on implementation of national pharmacare

The 2018 budget has confirmed the federal government is creating an advisory council on the implementation of a national pharmacare program. Marc-André Gagnon, associate professor at Carleton University’s School of Public Policy and Administration, believes the budget’s wording around implementation, rather than consultation, marks a real commitment to moving forward on this issue. “The advisory council is really […]