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CHEERS & JEERS: A step closer to tax fairness

['P.E.I. Senator Percy Downe told the Rotary Club of Hillsborough on Thursday that it doesn’t make sense that one multi-billion dollar bridge in Canada costs nothing to cross while tolls are charged on Confederation Bridge.']
P.E.I. Senator Percy Downe addresses the Rotary Club of Hillsborough in Charlottetown. Sen. Downe has been leading the fight against overseas tax cheats and for tax fairness for all Canadians. (File Photo)

Thanks to Sen. Downe, it’s becoming a higher priority that government becomes concerned about transparency, maximizing its revenues and ensuring the tax system is fair for all.

CHEERS: To P.E.I. Senator Percy Downe who saw his overseas tax evasion bill pass committee stage in the Senate. After hearing from 12 witnesses, the Senate Finance Committee passed Sen. Downe’s bill, the Fairness for All Canadian Taxpayers Act, and referred it back to the Senate for the final vote. If it passes the Senate at third reading, Bill S-243 would then be sent to the House of Commons. Bill S-243 would require the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) to report on all convictions for overseas tax evasion, as well as to report to Parliament regularly on the tax gap.

RELATED: Senate Finance Committee reviewing Senator Downe’s overseas tax evasion bill

Thanks to Sen. Downe, it’s becoming a higher priority that government becomes concerned about transparency, maximizing its revenues and ensuring the tax system is fair for all.

JEERS: To all the critics of Canada’s foreign policy who stayed on the sidelines when Canada took a stand three months ago against Saudi Arabia over the arrest of a civil rights activist with close ties to Canadian citizens. Canada stood alone as the Saudis over-reacted by suspending diplomatic relations, curbing trade and ordering home more than 8,500 Saudi students. If other countries had supported Canada then, perhaps we wouldn't have seen the emboldened Saudis murder a well-known journalist in a Saudi Arabian consulate in Turkey. The Turks have audio and video evidence that Jamal Khashoggi was murdered. The heinous act finally resulted in world-wide condemnation and action. Many countries are pulling out of a high-profile investment summit in Riyadh later this month. Will the Saudis now retaliate by expelling their ambassadors and recalling students and suspending trade? Hardly. If other countries, including the U.S., had shown support for both human rights and Canada in early August, perhaps we wouldn't be in this crisis today.

CHEERS: To host Mill River’s team which won the ‘P.E.I.’s Finest Golf’ tournament on Saturday against Brudenell and Crowbush. Each club sends a 13-person team of men and women, based on results in their club championship - along with the club pro. Mill River, which has never lost the event on home turf, collected 17 points while Brudenell finished with 12 and Crowbush earned the bronze medal with 10.

CHEERS: To Health P.E.I. for inviting all Islanders to its annual meeting -whether in person or online – to give their input and participate in discussions about health care. People are always willing to criticize so now it’s time to stand up and let their voices be heard. The meeting will be held on Tuesday, Oct.23, from 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the Rodd Charlottetown. Islanders unable to attend can watch at Health P.E.I. board trustee Jim Revell calls the annual meeting an opportunity “. . . for Health P.E.I. to provide Islanders with an update on the progress of health care in the province.” The evening’s agenda will include reports from Community Health Engagement Committee chairs and interim CEO. Islanders will be able to ask questions following the presentations.

CHEERS: To the winners of the 2018 Inclusion Awards presented on Sunday to honour individuals, organizations and businesses that strive to be inclusive and have made a significant contribution in Charlottetown as a result. People in the capital city go out of their way every day to help others said Charlottetown Mayor Clifford Lee. The Inclusion Awards were created to recognize people who help make the city more accessible and inclusive for all. The recipients are chosen based on nominations and selections by the City’s Civic Board for Persons with Disabilities.

CHEERS: To the 27 young Island women chosen to “take over” P.E.I.’s Legislative Assembly on Oct. 11 as part of the United Nation’s International Day of the Girl Child. They learned about the historical implication of P.E.I.'s Famous Five in 1993: Marion Reid (lieutenant governor); Catherine Callbeck (premier); Nancy Guptill (speaker); Elizabeth Hubley (deputy speaker); and Pat Mella (opposition leader). The 27 young women also considered how they could influence enduring change to encourage more women to run for public office.

CHEERS: To the team from Fox Meadow Golf Course in Stratford which won the RBC PGA Scramble Amateur National Golf Championship at Cabot Links in Inverness, N.S. over the weekend. The team rallied in Saturday’s final round to win the 54-hole event with a net score of 53 under par. Team members include Shayne Hogan, Jamie Doyle, Cody Doyle, Jerry Hughes and pro Bradley Jenkins. Ontario's Whistle Bear Club came second. A Nova Scotia team from the Links at Brunello finished fourth. There were 21 teams in the event which qualified through local and regional qualifying.

CHEERS: To all the participants in the 15th anniversary of the P.E.I. Marathon and associated events over the weekend. More than 2,400 runners took part in the race Sunday. Such a major undertaking couldn’t happen without the efforts of race director Myrtle Jenkins-Smith, her board, directors, manager, committee, sponsors and more than 300 volunteers who helped organize this major event. They all deserve a huge vote of thanks.

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