Ottawa – Federal legislation that would allow adoptive parents an income tax deduction for expenses related to adopting a child could still become a reality, Jay Hill, MP for Prince George-Peace River, said today. Hill was given new hope after his Private Members’ Bill, C-246, which proposes the tax deduction of up to $7,000, was debated for a second hour in the House of Commons.
“Even though the official government response to the legislation has been ‘no’, I have now learned that many Liberal backbenchers would like to see the federal tax system offset the onerous financial burden that parents incur when adopting a child,” said Hill. “Conservative, New Democrat and Bloc Quebecois MPs have already signalled that they’ll support the legislation … so now it all hinges on when Paul Martin calls an election.”
When MPs return to the House of Commons after the two-week Easter Break, Bill C-246 will be subject to a vote to determine whether it will proceed for review by the Finance Committee.
“I’m hopeful that if C-246 can proceed to Committee, the legislation will speak for itself,” predicted Hill. “Even if the committee makes amendments, what’s important to me is that Canada’s income tax system recognizes the significant financial and social contributions made by adoptive parents.”
“The federal government should be taking concrete action to encourage adoption in Canada. Currently, it is telling us that we must simply accept that an ‘adopted child’ is an ‘expensive child’,” added Hill. “Adoption is an emotionally draining and expensive undertaking for parents yet our entire society benefits from their decision to adopt.”
While he is optimistic about support from Liberal backbench MPs, Hill cautioned that should Paul Martin call a Spring election, C-246 will die. However, in the House of Commons today, Hill stated, “I intend to win my seat once again in the upcoming election and I intend to reintroduce this Bill in the next Parliament. This legislation to enact a tax deduction for adoption expenses will not go away no matter how much the Liberals would like it to.”