Calgary, AB – Michelle Rempel, Member of Parliament for Calgary Nose Hill, and co-chair of the Alberta Jobs Taskforce, today joined Nathan Cooper, interim leader of the United Conservative Party, and representatives from Restaurants Canada in Calgary to highlight how Alberta’s restaurant industry is being negatively impacted by federal and provincial policies that are increasing costs for local businesses.
According to Restaurants Canada, the restaurant industry accounts for nearly 4% of Alberta’s GDP and provides Albertans with 148,700 jobs plus 34,200 indirect jobs, making it the fourth largest employer in Alberta. The restaurant industry is also the number one source of first-time jobs. However, never-ending federal and provincial policies are causing local business owners to reduce employment and increase prices in order to keep their doors open.
“Albertans are strongly opposed to the Liberal government’s proposed changes that would result in a massive and punitive tax increase on hardworking business owners,” said MP Rempel. “My office has heard from thousands of Albertans, and over 44,000 Canadians have signed my E-Petition recognizing that these changes will damage local businesses and damage the Canadian economy.”
“Contrary to Liberal and NDP narratives, these hardworking Albertans have no problem paying their fair share, but the heavy burden placed on them by these policies is threatening their ability to remain viable in what is already an extremely challenging business environment,” said Nathan Cooper, interim leader of the United Conservative Party.
“Over the past two years, Restaurants Canada has heard from many frustrated Alberta members warning that they will not be able to survive the perfect storm of declining same store sales while being forced to absorb significant government imposed cost increases for long,” said Mark von Schellwitz, Vice President, Western Canada, of Restaurants Canada. “Adding these mandated cost increases in a declining sales environment has resulted in numerous restaurant closures, less work for the thousands of Albertans we employ, and less tax revenue for government. We are calling on governments at all levels to stop piling on extra costs on small businesses.”
“It is tough enough trying to survive an economic downturn where our guests are spending less money, but adding all these additional government mandated costs to our business has been like death by a thousand cuts, leading to the eventual closure of our restaurant a week ago,” said Clayton Morgan, Belvedere Restaurant.
“Governments need to do a better job of understanding the realities of running a small restaurant business, we do not have the time and resources to constantly adjust to costly new regulations and mandated cost increases,” said Leslie Enchino, Blink Restaurant.