OTTAWA - Despite the healthy growth in Canadas economy, if you ask employers what their biggest worry is, most will reply that finding enough skilled workers tops the list. This is no surprise. No where is this more true than in the mining industry.
The Canadian government has introduced three measures to address the shortage of skilled tradespeople by encouraging apprenticeship training in the workplace and supporting more young Canadians who pursue careers in the skilled trades.
- an APPRENTICESHIP INCENTIVE GRANT program providing a taxable cash grant of $1,000 per year to registered apprentices upon successful completion of their first or second year/level of an apprenticeship program in one of the Red Seal trades. The program came into effect on January 1, 2007.
-- as of May 2, 2006, an APPRENTICESHIP JOB CREATION TAX CREDIT providing employers with a tax credit of up to $2,000 per apprentice for each of the first two years of his or her contract in one of the Red Seal trades. This credit will encourage more employers to participate in apprenticeship training. For example, an employer who hires a first-level apprentice, such as a heavy duty equipment technician, would be able to claim a tax credit up to a maximum of $2,000 on the business tax return.
-- as well, a NEW DEDUCTION introduced on May 2, 2006 to recognize that many employed tradespeople, including mining industry tradespersons, must provide their own tools as a condition of employment. As a result of the new deduction, a tradesperson is eligible to deduct up to $500 from his or her annual income for the costs of new tools in excess of $1,000 that were purchased as a requirement for the job.
The government estimates that about 100,000 apprentices will benefit as a result of the new grant and tax credit. For information on these and other federal government programs, consult the Service Canada website at www.ServiceCanada.gc.ca or the Canada Revenue Agency website at www.CRA.gc.ca.
(This writer was unable to easily find information on these grants and credits on the sites suggested. - - MS)