March 20, 2023

The Queens County Citizen

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Federal benefit $ 1,000 | Travelers must repay this amount

Federal benefit $ 1,000 |  Travelers must repay this amount

(Ottawa) It may come as a nasty surprise to tourists who have pocketed $ 1,000 federal benefit without qualification over the past few months. They will have to repay that amount under a bill that will be passed soon.

Catherine Levsk
The Canadian Press

After several weeks of negotiations, the Trudeau government reached an agreement with opposition parties on Thursday to pass a bill that would prevent people traveling under emergency conditions from benefiting from $ 500 a week in quarantine.

This measure should work again by January 3, 2021; It will no longer operate until October 2, 2020, as Black Cubacois requested in the first place.

Bill C-24 provides that the Canadian Economic Recovery Sickness Benefit (CPMRE) prohibits all persons returning from travel, except those who have traveled for medical reasons and their families.

The bill allows customs officers to share additional information to crack down on criminals.

Prior to January 11, PCMRE applicants were not required to disclose whether they had traveled. However, amendments to the C-24 Customs Act allow Department of Employment and Social Development officials to obtain applicants’ entry and exit dates in Canada.

Internally, we explained that it is therefore easier to cross-reference data and identify which PCMRE applicants have traveled outside of Canada. If a person leaves the country for unnecessary reasons, they will have to repay the federal government the full amount they received.

The bill was unanimously approved by federal MPs Thursday morning. It will be considered by a committee on Thursday evening and will be adopted later in the third reading on Friday. The Senate must consider it before it can receive the Royal Assent and become law.

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Legislative change is needed following the outrage of citizens during the holiday season. The media has found a loophole in the current law, which allows them to take advantage of the PCMR during the holidays during their blockade and when they return home.

Government parliamentary leader Pablo Rodriguez has promised to introduce a bill as soon as possible to rectify the situation. As soon as he returned to Parliament on January 25, he presented the first draft, but without the unanimous consent of the parties.

Black Cubacos blamed the desired change for not working again until January 3rd. Instead, he appealed for a refund to all passengers who are not eligible for PCMRE until October 2, the date of receipt of Bill C-4, which introduced these new assistance benefits.