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Ontario asks for federal tax deferral for ranchers hit by drought

Ontario wants the federal government to grant some ranchers a tax deferral because of droughts in the province.
 
Agriculture Minister Ernie Hardeman has asked his federal counterpart, Lawrence MacAulay, to allow ranchers in affected areas, including Grey County, Leeds-Grenville and Manitoulin, access Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s Livestock Tax Deferral provision because of dry conditions and feed shortages.
 
“Farmers already face so many challenges on the job, and the effect that drought can have on pasture lands and forage production, forces them to make difficult herd management decisions,” Hardeman said in a statement Monday, noting some areas of the province have been “significantly” affected by drought.
 
The federal tax deferral lets ranchers in designated areas, who are forced to sell at least 15 percent of their breeding herd because of drought or floods, to defer a portion of the sales to the next tax year.
 
The amount deferred depends on how much of a rancher’s breeding herd is sold off.
 
Hardeman said his request of the feds is “another small way” the Ford government “is working to put more money in the pockets of farmers and keep Ontario open for business.”
 
Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada set the final list of eligible areas. That’s based on the advice of the federal agriculture minister, who often seeks input on affected regions from provincial agriculture ministers.
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