The Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) will be increasing mandatory insurance premiums on small business employers, says the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB).
For a small trucking company with five employees, this could mean an extra $394, bringing total 2013 premiums to $16,532. A small roofing company could be on the hook for $1,061; bringing total 2013 premiums to $43,602.
Though these figures might seem small, the news couldn’t have come at a worse time.
“Small business confidence in Ontario is lower today than it was at the beginning of 2012,” says CFIB’s Ontario vice president Satinder Chera. “Rolling the dice on higher taxes will further jeopardize jobs and the province’s economic recovery.”
Small biz owners have anticipated higher insurance premiums since earlier this year, after a report was released showing the WSIB deep in the red. Struggling with a $14.2 billion unfunded liability, the province’s workers’ compensation system is entirely funded by premiums on employers. Currently, Ontario’s average premium rate is the third highest in Canada.
“While recent steps by the Labour Minister to cut costs at the WSIB were encouraging, its cold comfort to the province’s small businesses that are now stuck paying a higher tax bill,” adds Chera.