TABER, AB (January 23, 2013): While the Alberta government earned an overall D+ in the reduction of Red Tape Report Card for small business from the Canadian Federation of Independent Business, the government gets an F for its lack of effort to downsize burdensome regulations on small business, the Wildrose Official Opposition said today. The report cites $4 billion of lost business opportunities due to the cost of regulation in Alberta in 2012.
The CFIB laments the “long list of remedial action” that needs to be taken. “The costs and barriers of doing business in Alberta are simply too high for young entrepreneurs and Alberta’s small businesses,” Wildrose Employment, Immigration and Enterprise Critic Gary Bikman said. “The repetitive paperwork and burdensome regulation create a disincentive for hard working Albertans to start or grow a small business. It is long overdue for the government to take action to reduce the regulatory burden for Alberta’s entrepreneurs.” While Premier Alison Redford has claimed cutting Red tape is a priority, her actions have shown otherwise. The PC government failed to implement even the modest recommendations of the 2012 Report of the Red Tape Reduction Task Force, which included making publicly available on a regular basis an evaluation framework for Alberta’s regulatory system. “The only way to show you’re serious about cutting red tape is to measure the existing burden, set a reduction target, and publicize your progress in reducing it,” Bikman said. “The PCs have failed to take cutting red tape seriously and we’re seeing the disastrous consequences of their inaction.” In addition to cutting red tape, Wildrose calls for the government to get its fiscal house in order to increase the province’s competitiveness, as well as for economic diversification, tax incentives, and an effective spending control strategy.