O.I. Leasing and Native Leasing Services
The Chiefs of Ontario have begun working in collaboration with both the Minister’s office (Hon. Diane Lebouthier) of the Canada Revenue Agency and the agency itself in order to find a resolution to the outstanding debts of former OI Leasing employees across Ontario. This effort was highlighted by a meeting between Ontario First Nation Chiefs and the Minister in early December of 2017 at the AFN Special Chiefs Assembly in Ottawa. The process to find a solution will be a lengthy one as the existing mechanisms to support former OI employees are not enough to adequately support their needs and as a result a new creative solution must be undertaken.
Through the collaborative process with CRA, the Chiefs of Ontario are advocating that former OI Leasing employees should be able to have their debts absolved through ‘Tax Payer Relief’. It should be noted however, that the standard ‘Tax Payer Relief’ protocols must be adapted to fit the specific needs of vulnerable First Nation clients who had relied on advice from OI Leasing and others.. Previously, a ‘Remission Order’ of existing OI Leasing debts was thought to be the only solution to this issue. Through further investigation, it was made clear to both Chiefs of Ontario and the Canada Revenue Agency that this would not be possible as the Minister of the Canada Revenue Agency cannot issue a Remission Order if other means of tax alleviation are available to her, which in this case is Tax Payer Relief. Chiefs of Ontario is working diligently to cut across the barriers with Canada Revenue Agency to achieve a better outcome for the former OI Leasing employees.