Randy Hoback wants the government to introduce a Home Security Tax Credit.
The non-refundable credit would be applied to the installation, maintenance and monitoring of a security system installed in an individual’s home, including separate structures such as garages or barns.
The maximum amount of eligibility proposed is $5,000 per year
Hoback, who is the MP for Prince Albert, sponsored a private member’s bill, Bill C-234, introducing the tax credit. It’s the first of several crime prevention measures the Conservatives plan to bring forward this session.
“We’ve been working as a caucus on rural crime and we came up with some things we could do from the federal side to improve the scenario to hopefully reduce the number of rural crime incidents,” Hoback said.
“This is just one piece in this puzzle. It’s a small piece but one of the foundational pieces to assist people getting proper home protection and giving some financial relief.”
Other initiatives might include legislation on “how to deal with these criminals” mental health and addictions and training, Hoback said.
While some future Conservative proposals might meet more pushback, Hoback doesn’t expect his bill will see much controversy.
‘NO one has reached out and said this is horrible. Everyone has reached out and said, ‘this makes sense,” he said.
“Some of the other things that get proposed later on might have more controversy based on different philosophies on how you treat people, but overall I think everyone is starting to recognize the impact of rural crime. It’s become a serious issue. This is one step in the right direction to deal with it.”
According to a conservative press release, 2019 statistics show 6,210 Criminal Code violations per 100,000 people nationally in rural areas in 2017. In Saskatchewan, the rate was 13,829 per 100,000, double the national average.
That same year, rural crime rates in the Prairie provinces were 36 to 42 per cent higher than in urban areas.
The measures won’t just help rural residents, Hoback said, but if passed could help urban dwellers who are also looking at installing security systems to thwart would-be thieves.
Hoback said he’s happy to tie his name to the proposal as it’s something that comes up in the riding.
“Constituents are asking for help and assistance,” he said.
The bill was read for the first time in 2020 and was reinstated with a second reading in the current parliamentary session. It was set to be debated Wednesday but the House of Commons ran out of time and adjourned to a future date.