Millwright Regional Council – Canada And Sisters and MPP Dr. Merrilee Fullerton, Kanata-Carleton

Published On: May 2, 2022Categories: News Update

Toronto, ON. – The Millwright Regional Council – Canada met with MPP DR. Merrilee Fullerton, Kanata- Carleton on Friday, April 22 to discuss tax fraud and the underground economy in Ontario’s construction industry, and ways to partner together on this issue.

The underground economy in Ontario’s construction industry undermines the province’s fiscal position and hurts legitimate contractors. A study commissioned by the Ontario Construction Secretariat, estimates that annual revenue losses due to underground activity have increased by 30% over the past decade.

According to Heather Ferguson, MRCO Business Representative Millwright Local 1410, Kingston,
“Construction industry tax fraud negatively affects economic growth in Ontario and reduces tax revenues for all levels of government, putting pressure on the government’s ability to provide the services and benefits that Canadians enjoy and expect.”

A study prepared by Prism Economics and Analysis May 2019 draws attention to the fact that only 22% of ‘Independent Operators’ are registered with the WSIB. Close to 84,000 independent operators are not paying WSIB premiums. Overall, estimates of revenue losses to the WSIB ranged between $308 million and $340 million annually during the 2013-2017 period.

Tax fraud in construction makes job sites less safe because contractors who operate off the books or misclassify their employees as independent contractors cut corners and compromise the safety of workers, such as not paying appropriate Workers’ Compensation premiums.

 According to Chris Sutton, MRCO Business Director of Political Affairs “The underground economy in Ontario’s construction industry undermines the province’s fiscal position and hurts legitimate contractors. The primary driver of the underground economy is employers improperly classifying their workers as ‘Independent Operators’ rather than employees.”

We are pleased with MPP Fullerton’s support to end construction industry tax fraud and working together towards solutions that reign in the underground economy.

The UBC Tax Fraud Days of Action is taking place across Canada and the United States April 11-16, 2022, to bring awareness to the issues of tax fraud and the underground economy.
Safety is our Highest Priority. Learn more at www.stoptaxfraud.ca

About The Millwright Regional Council – Canada (MRC)

The Millwright Regional Council – Canada (MRC) is composed of eight affiliated Local Unions of the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America (UBC) across the Province of Ontario. We represent thousands of women and men working as progressive cross-trained construction and maintenance professionals with exceptional skills to install, maintain, diagnose, and repair precision machinery, UBC millwrights are vital partners in industries as diverse as energy, automotive, aerospace, food processing, pharmaceuticals and more.