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BC Federation of Retired Union

BC FORUM News - From The Advocate, Spring, 2022


Federal Budget 2022 in brief


Diane Wood, BCGEU Director and BC FORUM Past President compiled the following information on the 2022 budget.


Health and Housing are priority areas of concern for elder persons.


• $15B in spending on major initiatives related to the supply and confidence deal with the NDP.


• $20M over two years to expand New Horizons for Seniors Program.


• A number of budget measures related to housing and health initiatives.


On health


• $5.3B over five years, then $1.7B on an ongoing basis to Health Canada for a dental care program, same as outlined in the NDP-Liberal agreement.


• The Canada Health Transfer will be increased by 4.8% over 2021/22 to $45.2 billion.


• A commitment to getting the Canada Pharmacare Act passed by the end of 2023 with Canadian Drug Agency to develop national formulary of essential medicines and bulk purchasing plan as in the in NDP-Liberal agreement.


• $26.2M over 4 years and $7M ongoing to increase forgivable Canada Student Loans by 50%, with up to $30,000 in loan forgiveness for nurses and up to $60,000 for doctors working in underserved rural/remote communities. $115M over 5 years with $30M ongoing to expand the Foreign Credential Recognition Program and help up to 11,000 internationally trained health care professions yearly get credentials recognized and find work in their field (CUPE Federal Budget 2022)


On housing


• $10M over 5 years on programs.


• Housing Accelerator Fund. $4B over 5 years targets municipal governments. Goal to create 100,000 houses over 5 years


• One-time $500 payment to people struggling with housing affordability (total $473M), details to come.


• Rapid Housing Initiative renewed at $1.5B to create 6000 units (program aims to convert hotels into housing made available to municipal governments).


• Co-operative housing to be supported by re-allocating exist-ing dollars in the National Housing Co-Investment Fund: $500 M to create the Co-operative Housing Development Program and $1B in loans to build co-operative housing (first major and explicit funding commitment to co-operative housing in decades).


• $150M over two years for affordable housing related infrastructure in the North.


• New tax-free First Home Savings Account. Canadians can save up to $40,000 with no taxes on investment gains. Contributions will be tax deductible (like RRSP) and withdrawals to purchase a first home non-taxable (like TFSA).


• A Federal review of housing as an asset class to be undertaken, with details coming later this year.


• New $7500 tax credit to support building an extra suite to support someone living in a multigenerational home with a disability


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