The B.C. government has announced tax breaks for families with children under 18-years-old. (File Photo)

B.C. BUDGET: New benefit increases family tax credits up to 96 per cent

BC Child Opportunity Benefit part of province’s efforts to reduce child poverty

The B.C. government is creating tax breaks for families with children under 18, combining the previously established Early Childhood Benefit into a single new initiative: the BC Child Opportunity Benefit.

Coming into effect in October, 2020, the new benefit raises eligibility significantly. A family with one child is eligible for $1,600 per year, two children up to $2,600 per year and three children up to $3,400 a year – a jump from the existing benefit’s maximums of $660, $1,320 and $1,980 respectively.

The benefit is reduced by four per cent of each family’s net income over $25,000 and phased out at a four per cent rate of each family’s net income over $80,000.

James said the benefit takes a year to implement while the province works out details with the Canadian Revenue Agency.

The refundable tax credit will provide $380 million annually to B.C. families, and has no impact on eligibility for child care benefits.

RELATED: New spaces a step to universal child care

Viveca Ellis of the BC Poverty Reduction Coalition said the benefit is a powerful tool to combat child poverty, but says the threshold – $25,000 – is too low to start reducing the benefit.

“We are disappointed to see the threshold for clawing back at $25,000. Leaving the threshold very low…means that single mother families and other families that are in poverty are going to see their BC Opportunity Benefit clawed back while they are still below the poverty line.”

“We would like to see that threshold raised right up to $40,000.”

No new funding was announced for child care programs in B.C. but funding continues to carry over from the 2018 budget –including a fee reduction for parents of children in licensed care up to $4,200 a year and an Affordable Child Care Benefit eligible to families households earning under $111,000.

“We added $300 million to support child care programs,” said finance minister Carole James. “Affordability is there for families and we expect that to grow and certainly hope that to grow…we’re also building child care spaces and supporting bursaries for early childhood educators.”

RELATED: Poverty coalition has high hopes for B.C. poverty reduction strategy



nina.grossman@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Semiahmoo advances to B.C. peewee hockey final against Burnaby Winter Club

Ravens to square off against only team to defeat them during provincial tournament

Surrey RCMP hunt for robbery suspect after woman threatened while using ATM

Police say a man demanded a woman withdraw money from her account while threatening her with a weapon

SOCCER: A Surrey coach recalls Alphonso Davies’ rise, days after his first goal for Bayern Munich

Injury may prevent the budding star, 18, from playing for Team Canada in Vancouver on Sunday

Tory MPs chant ‘cover up’ during federal budget delivery

Liberal government’s fourth budget delivered in House of Commons Tuesday, but nobody could hear it

Former South Surrey boxer relishing role on Riverdale

Peninsula resident Darcy Hinds has recurring role on popular CW series

After mosque attacks, New Zealand bans ‘military-style’ guns

The gunman killed 50 in a Christchurch mosque

MPs continue voting marathon as Tories protest shutdown of Wilson-Raybould motion

Multiple MPs have resigned from Trudeau’s Liberal cabinet

Canucks hang on for 7-4 win over Senators

Horvat nets 2 for Vancouver

European, Canadian regulators to do own review of Boeing jet

Air Canada plans to remove the Boeing 737 Max from its schedule at least through July 1

Prime minister defends Liberal budget measures as sales effort gets underway

Conservatives under Andrew Scheer say it’s a spree funded by borrowing against the future

Mayor meets with B.C. health minister on homeless taxi transfers

Two homeless people were discharged from Surrey Memorial and sent to a Chilliwack shelter

Teacher reprimanded for conduct towards special needs student

Alan Stephen Berry told vice principal he did not have time to use positive strategies

‘Full worm super moon’ to illuminate B.C. skies on first day of spring

Spring has sprung, a moon named in honour of thawing soil marks final super moon until 2020

Having phone within sight while driving does not violate law: B.C. judge

The mere presence of a cell phone within sight of a driver is not enough for a conviction, judge says

Most Read

l -->