Hiring Office Staff and Retaining Consultants
The BIA board of management consists of volunteer members. BIAs differ in size, number of members and budget. For this reason, some BIAs can function with a team of volunteers while other BIAs require paid staff to assist in running the day-to-day operations. In some instances, it may also be necessary to retain the services of skilled consultants for specific projects.
Where to Promote Your Job Posting
- Community newspapers – When posting a classified ad, take into consideration community newspapers. They are an inexpensive way to get the word out and will help attract the local talent you need.
- Internet – The most important job search tool is the Internet. There are a variety of websites that provide online posting services for employment opportunities. Posting a job ad on the Internet helps ensure that a large pool of potential candidates will see it. Charity Village is one such site frequently used by BIAs.
- The Toronto Association of Business Improvement Areas (TABIA) can also post BIA job advertisements on its website.
Sample: Classified Ad
Sample: Job Description
It is recommended that interview questions vary. Limit the number of closed questions, which require yes or no answers. The majority of the interview questions should be open-ended, situational questions that not only identify the candidate’s skills, but will also illustrate his/her communication, decision-making and problem-solving abilities.
- What do you know about our organization?
- Tell us how your previous experience makes you a suitable candidate for this position
- How would you work with a volunteer committee?
- What is it about this position that interests you most?
- Please provide an example of how you were successful in managing projects. How did you prioritize?
- In your previous position, what would you say were your three most significant accomplishments?
- How would you describe your ideal working environment?
- Describe a situation in which your work was criticized. How did you respond/react?
- How would you evaluate your previous organization?
Retaining Consulting Services: Request for Proposal Critical Components
Here is a list of required components to procure consulting services:
- Brief description of the project background and the nature of your organization’s operations
- Deliverables clearly itemized and outlined. Identify items you specifically want accomplished
- Timelines and deadlines: how much time for each deliverable and final project deadline
- Qualifications of the person(s) as they specifically relate to the project being requested
- Fee schedule and costs: Ask for specific breakdown of costs as they relate to the deliverables
- Three quotations: receiving three quotations represents a good sampling for comparison purposes and generally meets most government requirements.
Sample: Request for Proposal
Sample: Consultant Contract
Employee or Business Relationship
The Canada Revenue Agency sets out guidelines to assist your BIA to clarify employer-employee relationships.
Some of the topics you may want to review at the Canada Revenue Agency website are:
- Business relationships
- Employer-employee relationships
- Responsibilities for an employer-employee relationship
- Self-employed individuals.
Responsibilities: employer-employee relationship
Where an employer-employee relationship exists, the employer must:
- Register with the Canada Revenue Agency for a Business Number (BN)
- Withhold income tax, Canada Pension Plan (CPP) contributions, and Employment Insurance (EI) premiums on amounts paid to employees
- Remit the amounts withheld as well as the required employer’s share of CPP contributions and EI premiums to the Canada Revenue Agency Report the employees’ income and deductions on the appropriate information return
- Give the employees copies of their T4 slips by the end of February of the following calendar year.
For more information on this subject, see The Business Number and Your Canada Revenue Agency Program Accounts document.
The employer is also responsible for registering with the relevant provincial organizations, where applicable, for example, the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board.
Note: The employee could be eligible for Employment Insurance benefits. The employee could also be eligible for employee benefits such as sick leave, wage loss replacement plan and profit sharing.
If a payer considers a worker as a self-employed individual while the worker is in fact an employee, the payer will have to pay both parts of EI premiums and CPP contributions for the complete duration of the employment. Penalties and interest can also be charged. It is therefore important to correctly determine the type of employment relationship.
Responsibilities: business relationship
Where a business relationship exists, and where the self-employed individual’s income exceeds $500 or income tax has been deducted, the payer must:
- report the self-employed individual’s income and tax deductions, if any, on the appropriate information return
- give the self-employed individual copies of his or her T4A slips by the end of February of the following calendar year, if applicable.
For more information, see Employers’ Guide, Payroll Deductions and Remittances.
Self-employed individuals must pay both shares of CPP contributions. They may also have to pay their income tax and CPP contributions in instalments. For more information, see Paying Your Income Tax by Instalments.
Additional information on managing records, payroll can also be located at the Canada Revenue Agency website or by calling 1-800-959-5525.
It is important to be aware of the laws governing the workplace and your rights and responsibilities as both an employer and an employee. Provincial legislation governing the workplace is the Employment Standards Act, 2000 (S.O. 2000, Chapter 41).
GST/HST Rebates for Business Improvement Areas
Legislation governing Harmonized Sales Tax (HST) for purchases is provided in the Excise Tax Act and allows some organizations to claim full or partial rebates on HST/GST expenditures to vendors.
The portion of this legislation affecting Canadian municipalities also extends to para-municipal organizations such as Business Improvement Areas (BIAs) but requires an application to the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) on municipal status for each BIA established.
Application for municipal status
A Business Improvement Area is a specific geographical area designated by Council as an improvement area. Council also establishes a board of management to manage the affairs of the BIA and appoints all directors to the board.
Upon the establishment of a BIA and the enactment of a by-law to establish the board of management of this BIA, City staff in the Accounting Services Division will be notified and is therefore responsible for ensuring that an application for municipal status to the CRA is made. The BIA chair is requested to provide consent for City staff to make the CRA application on behalf of the BIA. The application consists of the BIA consent letter and certified City by-law in establishing the board of management. If you do not have copies of the by-laws, your BIA advisor can make them available.
The CRA notifies Accounting Services Division staff upon approval of municipal status for a BIA and also indicates a date after which rebates may be claimed on HST/GST expenditures. The date is usually the date when Council established a board of management. Upon receipt of this information from the CRA, Accounting Services Division staff notifies the BIA chair in writing of the CRA approval and effective date for GST rebates, attaches the CRA letter and provides instructions for the preparation of HST/GST claims for rebate. The availability of assistance from Accounting Services staff on how to prepare and file a HST/GST claim for rebate is also communicated at that time and includes contact information in the event that assistance is requested.
Preparing HST/GST claims for rebate
The basis for the HST/GST rebate claim is HST/GST paid to vendors on the expenditures incurred by the BIA. The HST/GST component of these payments is not normally separately recorded in the accounting records as a part of the disbursement process with the result that an analysis of these expenditures is required before a claim can be prepared and submitted. In some instances the HST/GST component of vendor payments might be recorded on the cheque stub whenever a cheque is being prepared, so that a summary of those amounts can be developed quickly. Otherwise a review of individual vendor invoices for the HST/GST component will be necessary. Documentation of the claim should itemize each amount and also provide details of the vendor name, invoice date and invoice number. This documentation is not required to be submitted as a part of the claim but should be retained in support of the rebate being claimed.
The HST/GST rebate claim is prepared on CRA Form GST66 and Form RC7066. The total amount being claimed for the federal GST rebate is entered in Part E of the form GST66 and the total amount being claimed for the Ontario rebate of the HST is entered in the Ontario Municipality box of the form RC7066. The Ontario rebate is 6.24% out of 8% Ontario part of HST. These forms usually can be completed quickly once the expenditures have been analyzed and summarized. An individual authorized by the BIA to sign these claims is required to certify the claim submission in Part D of the form GST66. The form RC7066 should be attached to the form GST66. Both the GST66 form and the RC7066 form can be obtained at the Canada Revenue Agency website.
As a minimum requirement, and where the volume of transactions and size of a rebate is not significant, claims should be prepared and filed on an annual basis. It may be appropriate to prepare and file claims on a semi-annual basis where the volume of transactions and size of rebate are significant. If it is determined that a GST claim or an Ontario municipal claim for rebates has not been filed for one or more prior years, the retroactive claim can be included in the current claim. Retroactive claims for rebates relating to expenditures incurred in prior years must be prepared and filed within four years of vendor invoice dates.
An accounting entry for each rebate claim should be recorded in the BIA accounts at the time of filing the claim. The final claim for a year is usually prepared by the end of January in the following year and should be accrued in the accounts for the previous year. The 5% GST rebate and the 6.24% Ontario rebate (from the 8% Ontario part of HST) should be recorded in separate accounts. It is assumed that most expenses are incurred within Ontario.
Notification for changes in contact information
When the responsibility for preparing and filing the HST or GST claims for rebates changes, the CRA should be notified in writing with the name and telephone number of the contact person assuming these responsibilities. Similarly, if the business or mailing addresses of the board of management change, the CRA should be notified in writing of these changes.
For changing one BIA’s HST/GST contact person’s name and address, the BIA’s out-going contact person should fax the notification letter on the BIA’s letterhead to the CRA Summerside Centre’s fax number: 1-902-432-5592. For any further question, BIAs should call the toll free number: 800-565-9353.
City contact information
Assistance in how to complete the HST/GST rebate claim form (GST66 & RC7066) is available from accounting services staff. Questions should be directed to Alex So at 416-392-6821 or by e-mail at email@example.com.