Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Pushing Back against Bureaucracy

At Startup Canada's Startup Day on the Hill last month in Ottawa, a number of entrepreneurs had a chance to sit down with senior members of the federal government to push our own specific ideas for new policies to support small business.

Most of the proposals involved new ways of funding investment in small business. That crucial gap being well covered, I took a different focus. I pushed for Ottawa to keep pushing back on bureaucratic regulations and red tape that hinder business dynamism and growth. The previous Conservative government was quite diligent on this file, but the Liberals had seemed to take their eye off the ball.

My proposal: that federal civil servants and regulators be mandated to review all new rules and legislation with an "entrepreneur-first" orientation. Any components that would stymie or slow entrepreneurial activity, I posited, should be shipped back to committee for overhaul.

You can read the details below.

(Note: Towards the end of Startup Day, I had the chance to speak with Small Business Minister Bardish Chagger, and ask her about the status of her government's war on red tape. She said the commitment is still there, but they're working on a new way to frame it. So let's keep the pressure on!)

Below, you'll also see my related recco: to raise the threshold for GST/HST participation to $60,000, up from the current $30,000. Let's not burden startups by making them all tax collectors!

You can also read my Financial Post article on Startup Day: Four key things Ottawa could do to improve startups’ odds.

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