Canadian Contractor

Steve Payne   

Once again the Ontario Government illustrates its blatant disregard for the wishes of its constituents

Canadian Contractor Business

"When the government finally succeeds in putting me out of business, as they seem hell-bent to do with all these tax grabs, it will be extremely hard to cheerfully grin and bear it

And here’s another renovator, Steve Ridgley, writing to us about the Ontario ‘College’ of Trades and their attempts to get carpenters to join their growing list of tradespeople who must pay up or lose their licensed livelihoods…

“I fully agree that those in structural construction should be qualified to perform such work in principle. I might even be persuaded to agree that the government should on some level have a watchdog process in place to verify that no one is being placed in danger by questionable construction methods or practices and that building codes are being adhered to.

I’m unsure how forced enlistment in a union is going to magically certify someone like myself to be a qualified carpenter. I’m certainly not going to close my business down and undertake an apprenticeship for the next several years so that I can once again reopen and continue what I am currently doing — building maintenance for cooperative housing, painting, flooring, drywall repairs, installing smoke detectors and tightening loose cabinet door hinges. It’s pretty in depth carpentry.

I’m fairly certain that for the right amount of money I can buy into the union, start paying dues, pay my blood money to OCOT and have a verified track record toward my hours, but how is that changing anything from the current state of affairs?

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The WSIB has already determined that I am a renovator. My mandatory involvement under the construction classification with WSIB means I have already had to hit customers with a substantial increase this year to offset the increased costs. Am I supposed to now go back to them less than two months later and hit them with yet another? I can’t see that one going over well.

I am self-employed by choice. But after 15 consecutive years of self employment and over 25 years throughout my lifetime I am fairly certain that my options for employment are limited. If this goes through I will, at 48 years of age, be forced to decide to close my business and take a job as a greeter somewhere, or go with the flow and starve due to overwhelming overhead costs.

I’m not sure what the worst part of this scenario will be for me….but when the government finally succeeds in putting me out of business as they seem hell-bent to do with all these tax grabs, it will be extremely hard to cheerfully grin and bear it when I make my tax filing that year.

Steve Ridgley

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