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Trades bill defeated

Charlton suspects Tories may introduce their own legislation

 By Mark Newman, News Staff

Canadian trades people won’t be able to claim out of town work expenses any time soon.

Hamilton Mountain NDP MP Chris Charlton saw her private member’s bill that would allow for the necessary Income Tax Act changes go down to defeat 149-126 in the House of Commons Feb. 5.
Charlton said there was no support from the Harper government conservatives.

“Conservatives unanimously voted against it, they were the only ones to vote against it,” she said. “We have a well trained workforce and we’re giving those jobs to temporary foreign workers instead of unemployed Canadians who have the skills to do that work.”

Under Charlton’s bill accredited tradespersons and indentured apprentices would have been able to deduct from their income taxes travel and accommodation expenses that are incurred when working at a job site more than 80 kilometres from home.

She noted both the building trades unions and contractors have been pushing for the tax changes for more than 35 years.

“For me this issue isn’t dead,” said Charlton, who noted that while she can’t bring back the same bill in the current Parliament, she does plan to introduce the legislation again if reelected.

Charlton said she suspects the Harper government might introduce its own trades bill in the coming months.

Hamilton Community News contacted government House Leader Peter Van Loan’s office for comment but have not received a response.

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