CLAC Calls on Federal Government to Increase Tax Credit for Volunteer Firefighters
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CLAC Calls on Federal Government to Increase Tax Credit for Volunteer Firefighters

CLAC is strongly in favour of Bill C-310, which seeks to increase the federal income tax credit for volunteer firefighters and search and rescue personnel from $3,000 to $10,000.

“As the union that represents almost 1,000 volunteer firefighters in the province of Ontario, we are happy to see MP Gord Johns moving forward with promoting Bill C-310,” says Jennifer Kennedy, CLAC representative. “Recruitment and retention are challenges for municipalities across the province and we support this bill to increase tax breaks. Not only will this support our current volunteer firefighters but hopefully this may also help others to consider this noble opportunity.”

The private member’s bill was first introduced in December 2022 and has received letters of support from municipalities across the nation, including a recent petition, which Johns brought to the House of Commons on January 30. Johns is hoping to see the increased tax credit included in the next federal budget.

In CLAC’s recent pre-budget submission to the Ontario provincial government, the union also advocated for the creation of a provincial volunteer firefighter tax credit that would match the current federal credit, as well as any future increases in the federal tax credit.

“Our communities rely on volunteer firefighters—with 90 percent of municipalities in Ontario alone utilizing volunteer firefighters,” says Kennedy. “These volunteers receive an honorarium of only $4,200 per year, on average, and municipalities face an annual turnover rate of 6 to 15 percent of volunteers. Increased tax credits could help municipalities recruit and retain volunteers.”

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