Podcast: Alliance For Renewing Indigenous Economies

In the past year, the Tulo Centre has been working with the Ngāi Tahu Research Centre at the University of Canterbury. Recently a delegation came from New Zealand to meet with the Tulo Centre to discuss the formalization of a working relationship between the two research centres. The Tulo Centre is pleased to bring you this conversation where Manny Jules, Te Maire Tau, Darren Russell and Rinito Davis discuss the creation of the Alliance for Renewing Indigenous Economies and the concept of Indigenous jurisdiction.

For more information on the Alliance: https://indigenouseconomies.org/ 

BC Workshop: Expanding FMA Tax Systems to Support a Jurisdiction Based Fiscal Relationship

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Expanding FMA Tax Systems to Support a Jurisdiction Based Fiscal Relationship
Feb 15th, 2018 - Vancouver, BC

The workshop presented by the Tulo Centre and the First Nations Tax Commission focuses on expanding FMA tax systems to support a jurisdiction based fiscal relationship. It will discuss how the fiscal relationship impacts the independence of First Nation jurisdictions. Key topics covered include:

  • History of First Nation fiscal relationship
  • Problems with the current First Nation fiscal relationship
  • Proposals to improve the fiscal relationship
  • Opportunities to expand First Nation tax jurisdiction
    • FMA tax options
    • Resource taxes
    • Cannabis and Tobacco taxes
    • FNGST
  • A Jurisdiction Based Fiscal Relationship Proposal
  • Requirement and opportunities for a new fiscal relationship

This workshop is designed for First Nations and others interested in expanding their tax jurisdictions and working towards a jurisdiction based fiscal relationship. It may also be of interested to those participating in the AFN and INAC discussions about a new fiscal relationship.

Limited travel assistance available.

For more information or to register, please contact:

Lindsay Risling
lrisling@fntc.ca
250-828-9857 or toll-free 1-855-682-3682

Workshop: Implementing FMA Taxation Systems in Atlantic Canada

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Implementing FMA Taxation Systems in Atlantic Canada
Jan 25th, 2018 - Halifax, NB

This workshop presented by the Tulo Centre and the First Nations Tax Commission focuses on implementing FMA taxation systems in Atlantic Canada. At least the following topics will be covered:

  • First Nation Taxation and New Fiscal Relationships
  • Atlantic Canada Taxation Systems in Operation
  • The Challenges of Establishing Tax Systems
  • Assessment Services for Atlantic First Nations
  • Utility Taxation in Atlantic Canada
  • Resource Taxation in Atlantic Canada
  • New Brunswick Sales Taxes and Collecting Property Taxes
  • Support and Capacity Development Opportunities

This workshop is designed for First Nations currently taxing or interested in taxing. It will be an opportunity to discuss strategies to overcome challenges to implement tax jurisdiction, ensure the new fiscal relationship meets the requirements of Atlantic First Nations and learn of new tax jurisdiction opportunities related to utilities, resources and sales taxes.

Limited travel assistance available.

For more information or to register, please contact:

Lindsay Risling
lrisling@fntc.ca
250-828-9857 or toll-free 1-855-682-3682

Register for the upcoming FNTAA 24th Annual National Forum

Each year the First Nations Tax Administrators Association (FNTAA) hosts an annual national forum on First Nation property taxation and related topics, which provides First Nation tax administrators an opportunity to stay informed in a field that is constantly changing.

This year’s forum is hosted by the Tsuu T’ina Nation at the Grey Eagle Resort and Casino in Calgary, Alberta on October 3 and 4, 2017.

Conference delegates will enjoy an annual golf tournament and dinner reception, which will provide valuable networking opportunities with colleagues and professionals.

Workshops will cover the following topics:

  • Taxation 101
  • Tax Administration System (TAS) overview
  • Assessment Board Review process
  • How Lands and Taxation are connected
  • Using Property Tax for Economic Development
  • First Nation Success Stories

The forum will also include presentations from BC Assessment, the Tulo Centre of Indigenous Economics, the First Nations Finance Authority, the First Nations Financial Management Board and the First Nations Tax Commission.

The FNTAA Annual General Meeting and Board of Directors elections are also held each year at the forum and attendance also meets the professional development requirement for Certified First Nations Tax Administrator.

This forum is great for tax administrators, finance officers, lands managers, administrators, First Nation elected leadership, and lawyers and consultants who work with First Nations with property tax systems in place.

To learn more and to register, please visit www.fntaa.ca.

Tulo student profile: Jesse James, class of 2017 valedictorian

Shxw’ow’hamel First Nation’s tax administrator Jesse James was in the 2015/2016 cohort for the Certificate in First Nation Tax Administration and graduated from the program earlier this month. Three years ago, Jesse was hired by Shxw’ow’hamel as the band administrator and as the organization transitioned, he also began serving as the tax administrator. Jesse is a member of Peguis First Nation in Manitoba and has lived in BC for most of his life. Jesse was chosen by his fellow classmates as valedictorian for their cohort and delivered a speech at Tulo’s graduation dinner.

Recently Clearing the Path had the opportunity to sit down with Jesse to learn more about his experience as a tax administrator and as a student at the Tulo Centre of Indigenous Economics.

How did you first learn about the Tulo Centre and its programs?

The program description came across my desk and really interested me. When I started at Shxw’ow’hamel, we were transitioning from taxing using section 83 by-laws to taxation under the FMA. At the time, I didn’t fully understand how the tax system works or why we did things a certain way, so I jumped at the opportunity to strengthen my knowledge in that area.

It worked out great because all the course material I was working on, had just completed, or was preparing to do was all falling in-line with how our transition to the FMA was progressing at Shxw’ow’hamel.

How does your experience at Tulo relate to your work at Shxw’ow’hamel?

Understanding how the laws are made, and understanding the benefits of a budget-based tax system as opposed to using reference jurisdiction was invaluable. With a budget-based system, you have to actually think about the services you will be providing ahead of time rather than figuring out expenditures after the revenues start coming in. I learned more about how to think more like a government, and it was definitely helpful to be able to ask questions of the instructors who have an incredible depth of experience and expertise.

Through the courses, I began to see how taxes can be used to benefit, support and fund initiatives the community wants. You’re creating own-source revenue and your own laws to expend funds in ways that best serve your community. It allows the community to decide how they want to spend their money and where they want to focus their priorities. Just by having that, it provides a stronger sense of community and inclusiveness. At Shxw’ow’hamel, there’s a really good sense of community so having this system in place builds on that.

You are currently working toward earning a Certificate in First Nation Applied Economics. What made you want to pursue another certificate through the Tulo Centre?

The quality of instruction is great and I like the way the curriculum is presented. Tulo’s cohort model is community-minded and that seems to work well. You get a lot from the instructor but you also get a lot from the students in the class too. Everyone shares best practices and the lessons learned, both good and bad. When we can bring that knowledge back home, that makes all of our communities better.

There were students in our class from all areas of Canada, and you can really see the similarities even though we’re separated by provinces and legislation. The issues we face and the successes we have are so similar and to be able to rely on a whole group going through the same process, doing assignments and sending out an email or picking up the phone, it really helps to have that initial support. You want to see each other do well, so you’re going to reach out and give the support, offer and in some cases, seek support. It really works.

The Tulo programs showed me there’s a lot of different ways you can create own source revenue through development cost charges or having small developments. Currently Shxw’ow’hamel doesn’t have any residential leaseholds but if we did, we’d have to set that up in advance and it’s nice to have the theory behind it. By immediately applying the theoretical knowledge we’ve learned – I’ve been able to participate in some conversations with my fellow classmates on opportunities and issues they’re going through in their communities – it is so helpful in expanding my own understanding.

Shxw’ow’hamel is a proponent of two key FNTC initiatives: the Aboriginal Resource Tax and the Indigenous Land Title Initiative. Why does Shxw’ow’hamel support these initiatives?

We’re definitely interested in seeing both initiatives go forward. With the ART, I understand it’s been a concept for a while now so we are trying to gain momentum within the group of proponents and hopefully for all First Nations in Canada. It’s just one other source of revenue for First Nation governments and it’s going to make our economies stronger and more flexible.

It’s critical to our success to have own source revenue to do what you want on your land or to purchase more land. With setting up a land registry system through ILTI, we need First Nations exercising their jurisdiction in either taxation or land ownership, that’s the bottom line.

We’ve got momentum now, we just need to keep pushing forward.

In the News: Zuckerberg meets Native American poverty

THE HILL
BY TERRY L. ANDERSON, OPINION CONTRIBUTOR - 07/24/17 

Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg visited the Blackfeet Indian Reservation in Montana last weekend, and took to Facebook to shed light on how federal policies have failed Native Americans with the current state of reservation economies. READ MORE

Workshop: Implementing FMA Taxation Systems in Ontario

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Implementing FMA Taxation Systems in Ontario
Aug 10, 2017 - Toronto ON

This workshop presented by the Tulo Centre and the First Nations Tax Commission focuses on implementing First Nations Fiscal Management Act (FMA) taxation systems in Ontario. The following topics will be covered:

  • The History of First Nation Tax Jurisdiction in Ontario
  • The Benefits of Implementing First Nation Tax Jurisdiction
  • The Challenges associated with First Nation Tax Jurisdiction
  • Assessment Services for Ontario First Nations
  • Transitioning from fees for service to tax jurisdiction
  • Support and Capacity Development opportunities
  • Other Taxation Issues – FNGST and Tobacco Tax Jurisdiction

This workshop is designed for First Nations who are interested in establishing tax jurisdictions, have cottages leases on their lands, have commercial leases or casinos, currently charge fees for services or are interested in other opportunities for First Nation tax jurisdiction.

Limited travel assistance available.

For more information or to register, please contact:

Lindsay Risling
lrisling@fntc.ca
250-828-9857 or toll-free 1-855-682-3682

 

AB Workshop: Increasing Wealth & Revenues through First Nation Tax Jurisdiction in Alberta

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Increasing Wealth and Revenues through First Nation Tax Jurisdiction
Nov 2, 2017 - Edmonton AB

This workshop presented by the Tulo Centre of Indigenous Economics and the First Nations Tax Commission focuses on implementing taxation systems in Alberta. The following topics will be covered:

  • History of Alberta First Nation Tax Jurisdiction: The Home of Modern First Nation Taxation
  • The Benefits of Exercising Tax Jurisdiction
  • Utilizing First Nations Fiscal Management Act fiscal powers in Alberta
  • The Potential of Resource Taxation in Alberta.

First Nations in Alberta have great potential to increase community wealth and revenues by using their tax jurisdiction over commercial developments, utilities, and agriculture. Developed by the Tulo Centre of Indigenous Economics, this workshop will focus on how to implement these tax jurisdictions and also how to utilize these jurisdictions to finance more infrastructure, negotiate better service agreements, add lands to First Nation jurisdiction more quickly, negotiate payments in lieu of taxation and support economic development. This workshop is available to interested First Nations in Alberta wishing to implement tax jurisdiction, undertake economic development and/or expand their current jurisdiction. It is relevant to Alberta First Nations with existing or proposed hotels, resource, commercial, residential, or agricultural development on their lands. It is applicable to those Alberta First Nations adding lands to their jurisdiction, negotiating service agreements, building economic infrastructure, planning economic development projects and exploring ways to generate more benefits from resource development. The workshop will use practical examples from communities in Alberta and provide tools, examples and skills to participants to advance their community’s interests.

Limited travel assistance available.

For more information or to register, please contact:

Lindsay Risling
lrisling@fntc.ca
250-828-9857 or toll-free 1-855-682-3682

2017 / 2018 Course Schedule

The 2017 / 2018 schedule for the Certificate in First Nation Tax Administration and the Certificate in First Nation Applied Economics is now available.

Certificate in First Nation Tax Administration Program Schedule

Apr 10, 2017 – Apr 13, 2017
COMMUNICATIONS, TAXPAYER RELATIONS AND DISPUTE RESOLUTION, APEC 1650

Jun 5, 2017 – Jun 9, 2017
SERVICE AGREEMENTS AND JOINT CONTRACTS, APEC 1660

Aug 21, 2017 – Aug 25, 2017
DEVELOPMENT COST CHARGES, APEC 1670

Oct 16, 2017 – Oct 20, 2017
CAPITAL INFRASTRUCTURE AND DEBENTURE FINANCING, APEC 1680

NEW DATES Nov 13, 2017 - Nov 17, 2017
INTRODUCTION TO FIRST NATION TAXATION, APEC 1610

Dec 4, 2017 – Dec 8, 2017
ESTABLISHING FIRST NATION TAX RATES AND EXPENDITURES, APEC 1620

Jan 15, 2018 – Jan 19, 2018
ASSESSMENT AND ASSESSMENT APPEALS, APEC 1630

Mar 5, 2018 – Mar 9, 2018
ADMINISTRATION: TAX NOTICES, COLLECTION AND ENFORCEMENT, APEC 1640

Certificate in First Nation Applied Economics Program Schedule

And introducing for the first time, the new courses for the Certificate in First Nation Applied Economics program.

May 8, 2017 – May 12, 2017
FIRST NATION FISCAL RELATIONSHIP AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT, APEC 2670

Feb 5, 2018 – Feb 9, 2018
RESOURCE DEVELOPMENT ON FIRST NATION LANDS, APEC 2660