Yukon gets a D on ‘red tape’ report card

The Yukon received a D on the annual "red tape" report card from the Canadian Federation of Independent Business. That puts the Yukon near the bottom of the pile, beating out only the F given to Manitoba.

The Yukon received a D on the annual “red tape” report card from the Canadian Federation of Independent Business. That puts the Yukon near the bottom of the pile, beating out only the F given to Manitoba.

The federal government, Newfoundland and Labrador, the Northwest Territories and Alberta didn’t get grades because it was too soon after elections to evaluate those governments. Nunavut is also not on the list.

The federation considers red tape to include “anything from ridiculous rules that are not easy to follow, to poor customer service when trying to get answers and navigate government, right down to conflicting messages from different agencies,” said Amber Ruddy, CFIB’s Yukon director.

She said the federation is not talking about vital rules, like those around health and safety. Instead they are worried about excessive regulations that make things difficult for businesses.

“Business owners describe it as death by a thousand paper cuts.”

In the report card the Yukon gets credit for implementing recommendations from the small business red tape review conducted in 2014. That includes streamlining procurement and establishing a central point of contact for businesses.

But the territory has nothing in place to publicly measure the amount of regulations business owners have to deal with on a regular basis. In the jurisdictions that did well on the report card there is a legislated requirement to measure and report publicly at least once a year.

Last year’s mandate letter from the premier to the minister of economic development mentioned focusing on red tape. That’s good, Ruddy said, but is not the same as action.

This year’s grade is lower than in 2015 when the Yukon received a D+.

“Until we can see some measure and outcome that red tape is being reduced in the Yukon, the grade will not improve,” Ruddy said.

The government could introduce a sunset clause on regulations so they would expire after a set number years, she said.

Or it could consider a one-for-one rule, so that if a new regulation is introduced, one would have to be taken off the books.

The first step is to get a clear picture of how many regulations the Yukon has, “because if a business is not complying with a regulation, it’s usually because they’ve never heard of it,” she said.

“We want the government to do an exercise where they figure out all the rules and regulations that they’re requiring businesses to comply with and start setting reduction targets to make it more manageable.”

Just Posted

Housing First facility is open, still more work to do, housing advocate says

Residents will be moved in by the end of the month

Whitehorse releases proposed $33M capital budget for 2020

It includes money for upgrading city infrastructure along with focusing on reducing energy use

Whitehorse animal shelter in dire straits, humane society says

Humane Society Yukon is holding a public meeting Nov. 26 to determine shelter and society’s future

The Poor Creature rallies as Yukonstruct court date looms

Supporters gathered at the café Nov. 12 as owner Brioni Connolly continues to defy eviction attempt

WYATT’S WORLD

Wyatt’s World

Today’s mailbox: Remembrance Day, highway work

Letters to the editor published Nov. 13

F.H. Collins Warriors beat Vanier Crusaders in Super Volley boys volleyball final

“As long as we can control their big plays to a minimum, we’ll be successful”

Government workers return to Range Road building

The building had been evacuated in October.

City news, briefly

The Food for Fines campaign and transit passes for a refugee family came up at City Hall this week

Rams, Warriors win Super Volley semifinals

The girls final will be Vanier and Porter Creek while the boys final will be F.H. Collins and Vanier

Rivermen start season with four-game road trip

“Our kids actually responded pretty well once they were starting to adjust to the pressure”

UPDATE: Road to Telegraph Creek open during limited hours

All-wheel drive vehicles are permitted from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily

Most Read