Hide Away Campground & Oyster Market

What Could The Recent CRA Ruling Mean For Your Campground?

In April 2016, the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) ruled that a private, family run campground in Ontario did not qualify for the small business tax rate. The CRA ruled the campground’s principle purpose is to derive rental income instead of providing a service, so it should be paying three times what small businesses pay.  The ruling left the campground operators facing payment on a huge back tax bill.

TIANS has been working to gather information about what this ruling in Ontario could possibly mean for campgrounds here in Nova Scotia. Together with the Campground Owners Association of Nova Scotia (COANS), we enlisted TIANS member Debi J. Peverill, Chartered Accountant at SBR Communications Inc., to ask her for advice for our campground members in regard to what the CRA ruling could mean for Nova Scotia campgrounds. Debi provided some basic information for distribution and answered questions at the June 8th, 2016 COANS Board of Directors meeting. From there, we have compiled further information about this issue and present it below for your review:

The Impact:

Without the small business deduction, incorporated campgrounds are required to pay 44% tax on their yearly revenue.

Tax Rates:

  • Active business under $350,000 of taxable income in NS 14%
  • Passive income in NS 44% plus a refundable tax of 6.67%. The refund applies when dividends are taken from the corporation

Implications of the Ruling: 

This CRA ruling has set precedence placing campgrounds in the same category as apartment buildings, mobile home parks, and other full-time residential complexes.  For many years, campgrounds in Canada have relied on the small business tax deduction, just like every other typical small business.

Recent decisions by CRA have assessed some campgrounds as a “specified investment business” and as a result not eligible for the small business tax deduction.

A specified investment business is described as:

  • A business where the principal purpose of which is to derive income from property; and,
  • A business that does not employ more than five full-time employees.

What CRA Policy Says:

The Canadian corporate income tax system contemplates two separate types of taxable income; income from property and income from business.

Income from business is taxed at a lower effective rate due to the availability of the small business deduction, which does not apply to property income. Another way to say this is to refer to business income as active income and income from property as passive or inactive income. The small business deduction cannot be used to reduce the tax on income from property.

Examples:

  • Income from property (passive or inactive income) – is income from an apartment building or rentals
  • Business income (active income) – is income from products and services, or from service focused accommodations typically likened to those provided by a hotel, motel or inn

Campgrounds fall in between these two examples. A campground with a high percentage of seasonal lot rental income is closer to being considered as earning only income from property. Income from renting a site for the entire season, or for the year, runs the risk of being characterized as rental income rather than business income.

Income from operating a store, selling firewood, or from providing other types of services, would be considered active income.  Transient business, which are daily or weekly campers who pay a daily rate, can also fall into the active income category.

An Exception:

There is an exception. A corporation earning rental income which has five full-time employees is considered to be operating an active business and, is therefore, eligible for the small business deduction.

If you have less than five employees CRA can argue that you don’t qualify for small business tax because with under five employees CRA can consider you a more rental-focused business as opposed to activity and service focus. This is where the concept of campgrounds being “too small” to get the small business deduction comes from.

It is important to note that none of this applies to a campground that is not operating as a corporation.

What You Can Do:

Remember that CRA looks at businesses on a case by case basis where operators have the chance to explain the activities at the campground and the revenue collected.  Separating revenue streams between rental and sales will be crucial to reducing the income taxed at the higher rate.

Recommendations:

  • Campground owners should talk with their own accountants to get advice specific to their businesses. Your own accountants will be familiar with how your business operates and will be able to provide custom advice
  • Operators must begin to ensure there is a definite separation from their seasonal camper business income and all other business income
  • Operators should use time sheets to track and log their daily activities and tasks. This will show the amount of service focus work and activities you put into your business on a daily/weekly/monthly basis

Moving Forward:

Currently, campgrounds in Nova Scotia have not been affected by the recent CRA ruling.  As the voice of tourism in Nova Scotia, TIANS will continue to work with our members to stay on top of this issue; please keep in touch with us. Working together will ensure Nova Scotia’s interests are protected.

Written by: Jennifer Falkenham 

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National Tourism Week 2016: May 29 – June 4

tourismTourism can be found in every nook and cranny in Nova Scotia. Whether it’s providing employment, inspiring entrepreneurial skills, or generating important economic development for the community – tourism is everywhere in Nova Scotia. Find out why tourism matters…

tourism2Tourism Creates Jobs. Tourism provides over 40,000 Nova Scotians with employment. That’s more than the Agriculture and Fishery sectors combined. Where are these people working? From the highest point in Cape Breton to the tip of Yarmouth – Nova Scotians have been working in this industry for years, and they’re arguably one of our most precious assets. The beauty of our province is only one of the reasons why visitors return to Nova Scotia. Read any TripAdvisor review, you’ll notice a theme – friendliness.

With that being said, 40,000 people is a lot. Can you picture 40,000 people under one roof? Just to give you an idea, the Scotiabank Centre in Halifax can host approximately 11,000 people.

Did you know that 1 out of every 3 Nova Scotians work in tourism as their first job?

tourism1Tourism Inspires Innovation. Tourism offers best-in-class experiences as business clusters bring together recreational, culinary and cultural activities to attract new visitors who spread the word about Nova Scotia as a destination.

tourism4Tourism Stimulates The Economy. With 40,000 people paying their taxes in Nova Scotia, surely that’s a lot of money. It certainly is – $225 million was generated in tax dollars in 2010. That money helps government invest in important infrastructure like schools, hospitals, roads, etc.

tourims5Tourism Is Resilient. There will always be time for travel, whether leisure or business, travel is a necessity – a way of life. Regardless of the stock market or what’s happening in the world, tourism remains a fierce industry that everyone dabbles in.

tourims6Tourism Inspires Community. Tourism highlights Nova Scotia’s rich history, culture and most importantly – its people. Through events, museums, restaurants, hotels, outdoor adventures and more, visitors and locals can enjoy the full benefits tourism has to offer.

touris7Knowing the 5 Reasons Why Tourism Matters – there’s never been a better time to chat with your neighbour, local MLA, or business next door about tourism.

Opportunity To Grow Tourism – There is huge growth potential for Nova Scotia’s tourism industry. The Now or Never Report released by the oneNS Coalition team believe that tourism can be doubled from a $2 billion a year industry, to $4 billion.

Moving forward, let’s work together to double tourism revenues so that our neighbours, communities, and businesses can live in a flourishing Nova Scotia.

Written by: Tiffany Hart 

 

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The Important Job of Preserving Nova Scotia’s Heritage

Museums and cultural centres hold keys from the past that can be used to unlock the present. As an important part of Nova Scotia’s tourism product, museums, and cultural centres promote economic growth through investment and regeneration, and provide a strong, positive emotional attachment for both visitors and non-visitors. No longer viewed as buildings that simply store objects, there is a sophisticated understanding that museums and cultural centres play an active part in deciphering the legacy of a culture and creating knowledge for, and about, a society.

Their role as the guardians of factual information and presentation of all sides of the story establishes museums and cultural centres with a unique position of being trusted. Care and preservation of heritage is strongly linked to pride and identity. Tangible pieces of collectively regarded heritage shed light on local traditions passed on from generation to generation. Preserving local heritage is crucial, particularly where industry and communities no longer exist. This purpose is important in its own right, but it also allows us to shape the future. Through museums and cultural centres we can understand where we are currently in our society, and it allows us to compare how we live now in comparison to past generations.  Today’s guest blogger, Sunday Miller, tells a story that demonstrates another essential component provided by museums and cultural centres, that through the preservation of local heritage we can learn from past mistakes and make every effort to ensure that we do not repeat them.

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Ms. Sunday Miller

Ms. Sunday Miller is the Executive Director of the Africville Heritage Trust Society (AHT). Africville was an African Nova Scotian community established in the 1700’s that was forcibly disbanded in the 1960’s. The spirit of this community lives on through its descendants and the heritage preserved by the Africville Heritage Trust through display at the former location of the Africville community. The Africville Heritage Trust is a not-for-profit organization managed by a volunteer Board of Directors. The AHT was established to manage the construction and operation of the Africville Memorial Project, starting with the construction of the replica Seaview Baptist Church, and later the Africville Interpretive Centre.

The Africville Heritage Trust museum is open on the following schedule:

(June – Oct) – Tues – Sun, 10am – 4pm

(Oct – June) – Tues – Fri, 10am – 4pm

Africville Museum and the Story of the Africville Community

Oral history suggests that some families of African descent were living on the shores of the Bedford Basin in the 1700s. These families may have been connected to the migration of the Black Loyalists from Birchtown to Halifax. This migration happened after the race riot that took place in Birchtown and it was from Halifax that approximately 3500 Black Loyalists left for Sierra Leone where they founded Freetown.

The initial major development of the area has been attributed to the Black Refugees who came to Nova Scotia as a result of the War of 1812. The first recorded deed was to William Arnold and William Brown in 1848. The refugees and their descendants developed this settlement and initially it consisted of a few homesteads which developed into a cohesive, self-sufficient community with all the socio-cultural infrastructures found in similar communities throughout Nova Scotia. Africville became a self-sufficient community that included a very active church, a post-office, a school and several stores. In the 17 and 1800’s the African Nova Scotian communities that were established in Nova Scotia were the only communities, outside of Africa, where Africans were allowed to stay free and were not forced back into slavery.

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Children Playing in the Africville Community 

Unfortunately, Africville also became the location for a number of less than desirable public amenities, such as: the Rockhead Prison (1853); the Intercolonial Railway line (1855) now called the Canadian National Railway (CNR); the Infectious Diseases Hospital (1870); and the city dump (mid-1950s). The presence of these undesirable amenities placed in and next to Africville caused Africville to be deemed a slum. Furthermore, the residents of Africville, even though they paid municipal taxes, did not reap the benefit of municipal services such as water, paved roads or provision of sewerage, etc. that would help offset the undesirable public encroachments.

In the 60’s, due to the prevailing urban renewal philosophy of the time, the decision was made that the community of Africville was not an acceptable place for people to be living. Therefore, the Africville community was destroyed by the relocation of the Africville residents to various public housing projects across the city. This relocation began in 1964. The physical fabric of the community of Africville, including the Seaview United Baptist Church, was bulldozed, with the last building being demolished in 1970. By that time, approximately 400 people, comprising 80 families, had been relocated.

In 1983, the Africville Genealogy Society (AGS) was formed to improve, revive and reunite the existence of all former residents and descendants of Africville.

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Africville Church (est. 1849) – Reconstructed in 2011

After several successful cultural initiatives aimed at commemorating the spirit of Africville, the AGS spearheaded a three-year strategic plan. Strategic priorities included reviving the spirit of Africville by revisiting plans to reconstruct the Seaview Church and to celebrate the history of Africville through the creation of an interpretive centre. During that process, it was determined that a new organization needed be established that would own and manage the church and interpretive centre. Thus the Africville Heritage Trust Society (AHT) was formed in 2010.

The Mission of the AHT is to keep alive the memory and spirit of the community of Africville through interpretation, education, and dialogue, in order that the history of the community and its people, and the lessons learned from their experiences, are passed on to current and future generations. This work will be accomplished through the activities of the Africville Museum.inside up close - Copy

The museum houses some artifacts that were salvaged from Africville as well as interpretive panels that tell the story of early Africans in Nova Scotia and the life of living in Africville. There are also audio/visual kiosks that contain comments from former residents of Africville, the perspective of the mayors of the 1960’s and the consultant that was hired to assist Halifax with its decision regarding the community. The apology given by Mayor Kelly can be viewed along with other audio visuals.

The importance of the Africville site is based on its historical and social justice learnings that can take place. Historical: in that it was one of the largest settlements of free Africans for many years. The people were totally self-sufficient and took pride in their self-sufficiency. They did not see themselves as victims but as a valuable part of their community that they had created in spite of the lack of support that they received from the city.

The Executive Director of the Africville Heritage Trust Society is Ms. Sunday Miller who is of Black Loyalist descent and was raised in Yarmouth Nova Scotia.

Introduction written by: Jennifer Falkenham

 

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TOP FIVE HIGHLIGHTS FROM THE 2015 TOURISM SUMMIT

Nova Scotia’s annual Tourism Summit is Canada’s largest tourism industry conference. More than 500 tourism stakeholders gathered in Halifax from November 22 – 24 with the common goal of continued success for their businesses and that of the Nova Scotia tourism industry.  On behalf of the Board of Directors and staff of TIANS and NSTHRC, thank you to all of the attendees, speakers, and sponsors for making the 2015 Tourism Summit a success.  Here are our top five highlights from TIANS’ We Are Tourism Summit:

1.  INTERACTIVE EDUCATIONAL SESSIONS
The focus of the educational sessions at the 2015 Tourism Summit was to address the present and future business needs of the industry.  Knowledge sharing armed delegates with tools for success that they can use to stay competitive and rise to the top in this global economy. Experts from TripAdvisor, Google/YouTube Canada, STR, InterVISTAS Consulting and Redpoint shared best practices and strategies that delegates could implement right away to help grow their businesses.

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Christina Miranda Principal, RedPoint Marketing, PR

2.  HIGH CALIBRE KEYNOTE SPEAKERS

A captivating line up of international and local keynote speakers were assembled to energize and motivate delegates. Attendees were privy to detailed business techniques that have consistently shown superior results. Award winning entrepreneur Stuart Knight, global entrepreneur and CEO Glenn Squires, and Marc Crothall, CEO of the Scottish Tourism Association, shared with delegates insightful messages of how to acquire success through building stronger relationships with the community, employees and customers.

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Stuart Knight Author, Entrepreneur and Communication Specialist

3.  TOURISM LEADERS

The Tourism Summit is the only event that provides the opportunity for industry to engage with so many tourism leaders under one roof.  Delegates gained valuable information from leaders such as Tourism Nova Scotia, Destination Canada, Halifax Convention Centre, Tourism HR Canada and Taste of Nova Scotia. These industry champions provided updates on innovative programs available to the industry and shared how to foster lasting partnerships that will directly benefit the future of their businesses.

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David Goldstein President and Chief Executive Officer, Destination Canada

4.  NETWORKING OPPORTUNITIES

When like-minded individuals are brought together to share their contributions and inspire each other toward action, the possibilities are endless. The 2015 Tourism Summit provided an environment for delegates to connect with other tourism stakeholders from across the country who believe that together, We Are Tourism, and that we can ‘Make Tourism Matter’.  Attendees had access to 30 industry suppliers through the Tourism Marketplace which showcased products and services that contribute to business success.

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2015 Tourism Summit Delegates

5.  WE ARE TOURISM

Industry people working toward business excellence build the foundation for the long-term profitability that sustains our communities.  To visitors, the experience that the tourism operators design forms their impression of Nova Scotia. Throughout the We Are Tourism Summit, we invited attendees to shine a spotlight on themselves by sharing their photos through social media with the hashtag #wearetourism. You may view the 2015 Tourism Summit delegate experience through their individual posts.

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#wearetourism

Annual Tourism Summit Celebrates Excellence 

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Written by: Jennifer Falkenham

*Published article in Eastern Hotelier Magazine. 

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2015 Tourism Summit – We Are Tourism – Photo Blog 5

The 2015 Tourism Summit concluded with a grand finale celebration; the Crystal Tourism Awards of Excellence Gala Dinner.  We gathered at the Grand Ballroom at the World Trade and Convention Centre in Halifax to showcase those individuals and businesses who are true leaders in tourism. Eight Crystal Tourism Awards of Excellence were presented.

Also presented were the 2015 Pineapple Awards – a celebration of our Pride in Service and of the individuals who go above and beyond to enrich visitor experiences. Throughout the year, visitors to Nova Scotia complete Pineapple Awards ballots located online and in hundreds of establishments throughout the province.

We invite you to continue to share your photos and videos of the 2015 TIANS Tourism Summit on our facebook page, through our twitter handle, or #wearetourism. On behalf of the board and staff at TIANS and NSTHRC, we would like again to thank all of the attendees, speakers, and sponsors for making the 2015 TIANS Tourism Summit a success!TIANS201500236

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Mr. Hanspeter Stutz, Grand Pre Winery

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Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21

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Big Spruce Brewing, Cape Breton

TIANS201500292TOURISM PERSON OF THE YEAR AWARD
Glynn Williams, Authentic Seacoast Company

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The Lumberjack AXEperience

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TOURISM CHAMPION AWARD
Pictou County Cruise Ship Committee

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Ski Wentworth

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Restaurants for Change – Nova Scotia

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TIANS201500274PINEAPPLE AWARD RECIPIENT
Helen Dunn accepting on behalf of Roger O’Donnell,
owner and operator of Birchwood Campground & Cabins in Pictou, NS

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Trish Julien with the Cambridge Suites Hotel in Halifax, NS

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Jacqueline Belliveau with the Visitor Information Centre in Lunenburg, NS

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Written by: Jennifer Falkenham

 

 

 

 

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2015 Tourism Summit – We Are Tourism – Photo Blog 4

The fourth photo blog in our 2015 TIANS Tourism Summit – We Are Tourism series focuses on day three; Tuesday, November 24th. Don’t forget that you can download copies of the Tourism Summit presentations on the conference website under the Sessions tab.

Throughout the We Are Tourism Summit, we invited attendees to share photos through the hashtag #wearetourism. These photos posted live on our event Instagram feed in real time. Don’t miss what your industry peers posted as they participated in the 2015 Tourism Summit through #wearetourism.

We invite you to continue to share your photos and videos of the 2015 TIANS Tourism Summit on our facebook page, through our twitter handle, or #wearetourism.  Stay tuned to the Voice of Tourism Blog for more photos from the event!TIANS201500116

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Written by: Jennifer Falkenham 

 

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2015 Tourism Summit – We Are Tourism – Photo Blog 3

The third installment of our 2015 Tourism Summit – We Are Tourism photo blog series focuses on day two; Monday, November 23rd, 2015. Copies of the Tourism Summit presentations can be found on the conference website under the Sessions tab.

Throughout the We Are Tourism Summit, we invited attendees to share photos through the hashtag #wearetourism. These photos posted live on our event Instagram feed in real time. Don’t miss what your industry peers posted as they participated in the 2015 Tourism Summit through #wearetourism.

We invite you to continue to share your photos and videos of the 2015 TIANS Tourism Summit on our facebook page, through our twitter handle, or #wearetourism.  Stay tuned to the Voice of Tourism Blog for more photos from the event!

 

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Written by: Jennifer Falkenham 

 

 

 

 

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2015 Tourism Summit – We Are Tourism – Photo Blog 2

We are pleased to present the second 2015 Tourism Summit – We Are Tourism photo blog. This set of photos are from the Sunday, November 22nd, 2015 Welcome Reception and Marketplace that took place at Casino Nova Scotia, Halifax.

Throughout the We Are Tourism Summit, we invited attendees to share photos through the hashtag #wearetourism. These photos posted live on our event Instagram feed in real time. Don’t miss what your industry peers posted as they participated in the 2015 Tourism Summit through #wearetourism.

We invite you to continue to share your photos and videos of the 2015 TIANS Tourism Summit on our facebook page, through our twitter handle, or #wearetourism.  Stay tuned to the Voice of Tourism Blog in the coming weeks for more photos from the event!TIANS201500332

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Written by: Jennifer Falkenham 

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2015 Tourism Summit -We Are Tourism – Photo Blog 1

On behalf of the board and staff at TIANS and NSTHRC, we would like to thank all of the attendees, speakers, and sponsors for making the 2015 Tourism Summit a success! The energy during this years event was outstanding. It’s always a pleasure to host 600 tourism professionals from around the province and facilitate the industry’s immersion in the enterprise of tourism.

This first Tourism Summit blog installment is comprised of personal photos taken during the three day event in Halifax from November 22-24, 2015. Throughout the We Are Tourism Summit, we invited attendees to share photos through the hashtag #wearetourism. These photos posted live on our event Instagram feed in real time. Don’t miss what your industry peers posted as they participated in the 2015 Tourism Summit through #wearetourism.

We invite you to continue to share your photos and videos of the 2015 TIANS Tourism Summit on our facebook page, through our twitter handle, or #wearetourism.  Stay tuned to the Voice of Tourism Blog in the coming weeks for more photos from the event!


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Written by: Jennifer Falkenham