PO Box 27
Saturna BC V0N 2Y0
November 16, 2018 Adam Olsen, MLA 215-2506 Beacon Avenue Sidney, BC V8L 4T9 Re: Foreign Buyers Tax -- Application to Southern Gulf Islands Dear Adam, In March of this year, Saturna Island Ratepayers and Residents Association (SIRRA) wrote to request your action on the Speculation Tax, as under the original Budget 2018 the tax was proposed to apply to the Southern Gulf Islands (SGI) region. That issue has now been resolved through subsequent removal of the SGI from inclusion in the area to which the tax is to be applied. We wish to thank you for your work in ensuring exemption from this tax for the SGI, a region that was correctly recognized as not being appropriate for introduction of this tax. Recently we have become aware that, in spite of removal of the SGI from application of the Speculation Tax, our region remains included for application of the Foreign Buyers Tax. The Foreign Buyers tax has been proposed as a solution to a problem that exists in urban areas, and again the SGI has been included by reason of being part of the primarily urban Capital Regional District. In the same manner that Speculation Tax was inappropriate for the SGI, so too is the 20% in additional tax to be paid by non-Canadian residents when purchasing property in our area. As with the Speculation Tax, the Foreign Buyers tax is seen to be detrimental to the fragile economy of Saturna Island, with some of the effects already being felt by collapse of residential sales upon revelation of the significant tax that will be applied. SIRRA has surveyed its membership and received an overwhelming response that SIRRA should take action to have Saturna exempted from the Foreign Buyers Tax.
We again turn to you in requesting assistance in making this much needed correction that Foreign Buyers Tax be confined to areas where there is a problem being caused by foreign ownership, and not to areas where such problem does not exist. Sincerely, Michel Chiasson President, SIRRA cc : The Honourable Carole James, BC Minister of Finance The Honourable John Horgan, Premier of BC