Westminster Savings Supports Province's Decision to Pause Tax Rate Increase

Decision benefits members, small businesses and local economic development

SURREY, January 25, 2017— Westminster Savings Credit Union (Westminster Savings) welcomes the B.C. Government’s decision to defer increases to the credit union tax rate.

“The announcement by Finance Minister Mike de Jong to keep the tax rate at 2016 levels while the government awaits the results of a larger review into provincial legislation that governs credit unions is great news!” said President and CEO Gavin Toy. “A competitive tax environment for credit unions remains critical to the strength of local economies throughout B.C. This decision will enable all B.C. credit unions to continue their long-standing tradition of serving their members, making important investments in their communities and supporting local economic development.”

Similar to banks, credit unions are required to build capital to ensure sustainability. However, unlike banks which can access capital markets, credit unions are member-owned co-operatives that rely on retained earnings for capital. Increasing taxes on credit unions impedes their ability to grow retained earnings and capital. This in turn limits their ability to reinvest capital back into the provincial economy through loans to families and small businesses, and make significant impact in their local communities through charitable donations.

The province had planned to phase out a small business tax rate on credit unions and increase it incrementally over the next four years. The lower tax rate was originally put in place in recognition of credit unions’ unique cooperative structure and commitment to supporting their local economies and communities.

“We look forward to consulting further with the government on this matter and will continue to advocate for the preferential tax rate for credit unions for the benefit of our members and local communities,” added Mr. Toy.

About Westminster Savings Credit Union

At $3.6 billion in assets under management, more than 65,000 customers and 400 employees, Westminster Savings is among the largest credit unions in Canada. Known for its customer and community focus, people oriented culture, and sound financial and operating practices, Westminster Savings provides a full range of retail, commercial, leasing and wealth management solutions to meet its customers’ evolving needs. To learn more, visit www.wscu.com

For more information, please contact:

Cathryn Tucker
Manager, Corporate and Internal Communications
604-519-4210
ctucker@wscu.com

 

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