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Bill 166 needs an important amendment for our community

Québec City, March 19, 2018 – The Quebec English School Boards Association (QESBA) is asking the government of Québec to amend Bill 166 to leave the taxation responsibility with school boards.

QESBA held a joint news conference in Québec City with the Féderation des commissions scolaires du Québec (FCSQ) as we continue to work on important amendments to Bill 166, ensuring taxation authority remains with our local school boards.

“We are requesting a simple amendment that would support our school boards who cover multiple administrative regions and share their territories with multiple francophone boards. Our community is deeply attached to its schools and the right to manage and control our institutions. Citizens often choose to support their school boards by choosing to pay their taxes to them, to receive bilingual services, to be part of their education family. Although we are pleased the government has made the necessary corrections to finally have equity in school taxation with normalized rates, the proposed bill distances us from our citizens and will create administrative burdens that will hurt, not improve the system,” said President Jennifer Maccarone.

“QESBA applauds the basic principle of the bill and we have been actively pursuing a solution to taxation for years. We feel strongly that it is necessary for our local boards to maintain their own taxation authority. Bill 166 imposes administrative tax centres in regions, or forces the transfer taxation authority to the Comité de gestion de la taxe scolaire de l'île de Montréal. QESBA proposes our representatives be part of the solution going forward and work with the government to develop optimization if any. The government’s desire to promote subsidiarity should prevail here, and they should continue to allow local boards to work efficiently, keep our employees, and continue to address the needs of our local communities,” concluded the President.

QESBA is the voice of English public education in Québec and represents 100,000 students in 340 elementary, high schools, and adult and vocational centres across Québec.