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The Canadian federal government has removed the small business status from private campgrounds, a move that could endanger their ability to survive, according to a Manitoulin Expositor report.

“This is an issue I had worked on quite a bit previously, about this being looked at by the government, writing letters and bringing concerns forward on behalf of businesses in this constituency. For us, camping and campgrounds provide a huge economic activity in our riding, not only for locals but the many people who visit our area for these services,” said Algoma-Manitoulin-Kapuskasing MP Carol Hughes.

“At this time, I am continuing to do research on the decision that has been made. This is an issue we have worked on for a few years, raising concerns with the ministry of tourism, finance, small business and Revenue Canada. It seems that there is not a great deal of understanding of how these businesses operate, and that removing the small business status would endanger these businesses ability to survive,” said Hughes.

One private campground owner, who wished to remain anonymous, told the Recorder that removing the small business status, “will be devastating to us. I’m not sure if we will be able to continue (to operate).”

A release from the Ontario Private Campground Association dated Sept. 3 reads, “while Canadians enjoyed the last long weekend of the summer, Ontario’s incorporated campgrounds are deemed invaluable in the province’s economy and Canada. In a judge’s decision on Friday, incorporated campgrounds are too small to qualify as small businesses. Under direction from the Ministry of Finance Canada and the Ministry of National Revenue, the CRA has targeted small Ontario businesses and won a manipulated tax law ruling.”

“Since the 2015 federal election, Prime Minister Trudeau’s government has taken aim at the camping industry not only in Ontario, but Quebec and Alberta as well. This is impacting tourism and rural economic prosperity across the country. With the judge’s decision, it is a nail in the coffin for family-owned businesses,” the release notes.

For the full report click here.